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I. The Thfee Metamorphoses 


2. The Academic Qiairs of Virtue 


3. Backworldsmen 


4. The Despisers of the Body 


5. Joys and Passions 


6. The Pale Criminal 


7. Reading and Writing 


8. The Tree on the Hill 


9. The Preachers of Death 


10. War and Warriors 


II. The New Idol 


12. The Flies in the Market-Place 


13. Chastity 


14. The Friend 


15. The Thousand and One Goals 


16. Neighbour-Love 


17. The Way of the Creating One 


18. Old and Young Women 


19. The Bite of tiie Adder 


20. Child and Marriage 


21. Voluntary Death 

7 A 

22. The Bestowing Virtue 







23. The Child with the Mirror 87 

24. In the Happy Isles 90 

25. The Pitiful 93 

26. The Priests 96 

27. The Virtuous 99 

28. The Rabble ' 103 

29. The Tarantulas 106 

30. The Famous "Wise Ones no 

31. The Night Song 113 

32. The Dance Song 116 

33. The Grave Song 119 

34. Self-Surpassing 122 

35. The Sublime Ones 126 

36. The Land of Culture 129 

37. Immaculate Perception 132 

38. Scholars 135 

39. Poets 138 

40. Great Events 142 

41. The Soothsayer 146 

42. Redemption 150 

43. Manly Prudence 156 

44. The StiUest Hour 159 


45. The Wanderer 167 

46. The Vision and the Enigma 171 

47. Involuntary Bliss 177 

48. Before Sunrise 181 

49. The Bedwarfing Virtue 184 

50. On the Olive-Mount 191 





51. OnPassing-by 


52. The Apostates 


53. The Return Home 


54. The Three Evil Things 


55. The Spirit of Gravit7 


56. Old and New Tables 


57. The Convalescent 


58- The Great Longing 


59. The Second Dance Song 


60. The Seven Seals 



61 . The Honey Sacrifice 


62 . The Cry of Distress 


^3. Talk with the Kings 


64. The Leech 


65. The Magician 


66 . Out of Service 


67. The Ugliest Man 


68. The Voluntary Beggar 


69. The Shadow 


70. Noontide 


71. The Greeting 

31 1 

72. The Supper 


73. The Higher Man 



74. The Song of Mekncholy* 

75. Science 

33 «^ 

76. Among Daughters of the Desert 


77. The Awakening 


78. The Ass-Festival 

352 i 

79. The Drunken Song 


80. The Sign 



ZdTathustra^ s Prologue 


When Zarathustra was thirty years old, he left his home and 
the lake of his home, and went into the moxmtains. There he 
enjoyed his spirit and his solitude, and for ten years did not 
weary of it. But at last his heart changed, — ^and rising one 
morning with the rosy dawn, he went before the sun, and 
spake thus unto it: 

Thou great star! What would be thy happiness if thou hadst 
not those for whom thou shinest! 

For ten years hast thou climbed hither unto my cave: thou 
wouldst have wearied of thy light and of the joumgr, had it not 
been for me, mine eagle, and my serpent. 

But we awaited thee every morning, took from thee thine 
overflow, and blessed thee for it. 

Lo! I am weary of my wisdom, like the bee that hath gath- 
ered too much honey; I need hands outstretched to take it. 

I would fain bestow and distribute, until the wise have once 
more become joyous in their foUy, and the poor happy in their 

Therefore must I descend into the deep: as thou doest in 
the evening, when thou goest behind the sea, and givest light 
also to the nether-world, thou exuberant star! 

Like thee must I go down, as men say, to whom I shali 


4 zarathustra's prologue 

Bless me, then, thou tranquil eye, that canst behold even the 
greatest happiness without envy! 

Bless the cup that is about to overflow, that the water may 
flow golden out of it, and carry everywhere the reflection of 
thy bliss! 

Lo! This cup is again going to empty itself, and Zarathustra 
is again going to be a man. 

Thus began Zarathustra's down-going. 

Zarathustra went down the mountain alone, no one meeting 
him. When he entered the forest, however, there suddenly 
stood before him an old man, who had left his holy cot to seek 
roots. And thus spake the old man to Zarathustra: 

^'No stranger to me is this wanderer: many years ago passed 
he by. Zarathustra he was called; but he hath altered. 

Then thou carriedst thine ashes into the mountains: wilt 
thou now carry thy fire into the valleys? Fearest thou not the 
incendiary’s doom? 

Yea, I recognize Zarathustra. Pure is his eye, and no loath- 
ing lurketh about his mouth. Goeth he not along like a 
, dancer? 

Altered is Zarathustra; a child hath Zarathustra become; an 
awakened one is Zarathustra: what wilt thou do in the land of 
the sleepers? 

i As in the sea hast thou lived in solitude, and it hath borne 
thee up. Alas, wilt thou now go ashore? Alas, wilt thou again 
drag thy body thyself?” 

Zarathustra answered: *T love mankind.” 

zarathustra’s prologue 5 

"Why/* said the saint, "did I go into the forest and the 
desert? Was it not because I loved men far too well? 

Now I love God: men, I do not love. Man is a thing too 
imperfect for me. Love to noian would be fatal to me.” 

Zarathustra answered: "What spake I of love! I am bring- 
ing gifts unto men.** 

"Give them nothing/* said the saint. "Take rather part of 
their load, and carry it along with them — ^that will be most 
agreeable imto them: if only it be agreeable unto thee! 

If, however, thou wilt give xinto them, give them no more 
than an alms, and let them also beg for it!** 

"No,** replied Zarathustra, "I give no alms. I am not poor 
enough for that’* 

The saint laughed at Zarathustra, and spake thus: "Then 
see to it that they accept thy treasures! They are distrustful of 
anchorites, and do not believe that we come with gifts. 

The fall of our footsteps ringeth too hollow through their 
streets. And just as at night, when they are in bed and hear a 
man abroad long before sunrise, so they ask themselves con- 
cerning us: Where goeth the thief? 

Go not to men, but stay in the forest! Go rather to the ani- 
mals! Why not be like me — a. bear amongst bears, a bird 
amongst birds?” 

"And what doeth the saint in the forest?** asked Zarathustra., 

The saint answered: "I make hymns and sing them; and int 
making hymns I laugh and weep and mumble: thus do I prais4 

With singing, weeping, laughing, and mximbling do I praise 
the God who is my God. But what dost thou bring us as a gift?*f 

When Zarathustra had heard these words, he bowed to the 
saint and said : "What should I have to give thee! Let me rather 
hurry hence lest I take aught away from thee!” — And tiixls 


zarathustra's prologue 

they parted from one another, the old man and Zarathustra, 
laughing like schoolboys. 

When Zarathustra was alone, however, he said to his heart: 
*'Could it be possible! This old saint in the forest hath not yet 
heard of it, that God is deadr 


When 2!;arathustra arrived at the nearest town which ad- 
joineth the forest, he found many people assembled in the 
market-place; for it had been annoxmced that a rope-dancer 
would give a performance. And Zarathustra spake thus unto 
the people: 

1 teach you the Superman. Man is something that is to be 
surpassed. What have ye done to surpass man? 

All beings hitherto have created something beyond them- 
selves: and ye want to be the ebb of that great tide, and would 
rather go back to the beast than surpass man? 

What is the ape to man? A laughing-stock, a thing of shame. 
And just the same shall man be to the Superman: a laughing- 
stock, a thing of shame. 

Ye have made your way from the worm to man, and much 
within you is still worm. Once were ye apes, and even yet man 
is more of an ape than any of the apes. 

Even the wisest among you is only a disharmony and hybrid 
of plant and phantom. But do I bid you become phantoms or 

Lo, I teach you the Superman! 

The Superman is the meaning of the earth. Let your will 
say: The Superman shall be the meaning of the earth! 

I conjure you, my brethren, remain true to the earth, and be- 

zarathustra’s prologue 


lieve not those who speak unto you of superearthly hopes! 
Poisoners are they, whether they know it or not. 

Despisers of life are they, decaying ones and poisoned ones 
themselves, of whom the earth is weary: so away with them! 

Once blasphemy against God was the greatest blasphemy; 
but God died, and therewith also those blasphemers. To blas- 
pheme the earth is now the dreadf ulest sin, and to rate the heart 
of the unknowable higher than the meaning of the earth! 

Once the soul looked contemptuously on the body, and then 
that contempt was the supreme thing: — ^the soul wished the 
body meagre, ghastly, and famished. Thus it thought to escape 
from the body and the earth. 

Oh, that soul was itself meagre, ghastly, and famished; and 
cruelty was the delight of that soul! 

But ye, also, my brethren, tell me: What doth your body say 
about your soul? Is your soul not poverty and pollution and 
wretched self-complacency? 

Verily, a polluted stream is man. One must be a sea, to re- 
ceive a polluted stream without becoming impure. 

Lo, I teach you the Superman: he is that sea; in him can your 
great contempt be submerged. 

What is the greatest thing ye can experience? It is the hour 
of great contempt. The hour in which even your happiness be- 
cometh loathsome unto you, and so also your reason and virtue. 

The hour when ye say: ''What good is my happiness! It is 
poverty and pollution and wretched self-complacency. But my 
happiness should justify existence itself!'" 

Tlie hour when ye say: "What good is my reason! Doth it 
long for knowledge as the lion for his food? It is poverty and 
pollution and wretched self-complacency!" 

The hour when ye say: "What good is my virtue! As yet it 
hath not made me passionate. How weary I am of my good 



and my bad! It is all poverty and pollution and wretched self- 

The hour when ye say: '*What good is my justice! I do not 
see that I am fervour and fuel. The just, however, are fervour 
and fuel!” 

The hour when we say: *'What good is my pity! Is not pity 
the cross on which he is nailed who loveth man? But my pity 
is not a crucifixion.” 

Have ye ever spoken thus? Have ye ever cried thus? Ah! 
would that I had heard you crying thus! 

It is not your sin — it is your self-satisfaction that crieth unto 
heaven; your very sparmgness in sin crieth unto heaven! 

Where is the lightning to lick you with its tongue? Where 
is the frenzy with which ye should be inoculated? 

Lo, I teach you the Superman: he is that lightning, he is that 
frenzy! — 

When Zarathustra had thus spoken, one of the people called 
out: ”We have now heard enough of the rope-dancer; it is 
time now for us to see him!” And all the people laughed at 
Zarathustra. But the rope-dancer, who thought the words ap- 
plied to him, began his performance. 


Zarathustra, however, looked at the people and wondered- 
Then he spake thus: 

Man is a rope stretched between the animal and the Super- 
man — a rope over an abyss. 

A dangerous crossing, a dangerous wayfaring, a dangerous 
looking-back, a dangerous trembling and halting. 

What is great in man is that he is a bridge and not a goal: 

zarathustra’s prologue 9 

what is lovable in man is that he is an over- going and a down- 

I love those that know not how to live except as down-goers, 
for they are the over-goers. 

I love the great despisers, because they are the great adorers, 
and arrows of longing for the other shore. 

I love those who do not first seek a reason beyond the stars 
for going down and being sacrifices, but sacrifice themselves to 
the earth, that the earth of the Superman may hereafter arrive. 

I love him who liveth in order to know, and seeketh to know 
in order that the Superman may hereafter live. Thus seeketh he 
his own down-going. 

I love him who laboured! and inventeth, that he may build 
the house for the Superman, and prepare for him earth, animal, 
and plant; for thus seeketh he his own down-going. 

I love him who loveth his virtue: for virtue is the will to 
down-going, and an arrow of longing. 

I love him who reserved! no share of spirit for himself, but 
wanted! to be wholly the spirit of his virtue: thus walketh he 
as spirit over the bridge. 

I love him who maketh his virtue his inclination and destiny : 
thus, for the sake of his virtue, he is willing to live on, or live 
no more. 

I love him who desireth not too many virtues. One virtue is 
more of a virtue than two, because it is more of a knot for one's 
destiny to cling to. 

I love him whose soul is lavish, who wanteth no thanks and 
doth not give back: for he always bestoweth, and desireth not 
to keep for himself. 

I love him who is ashamed when the dice fall in his favour, 
and who then asketh: **Am I a dishonest player.^"^ — ^for he is' 
willing to'succumb. 

10 zarathustra's prologue 

I love him who scattereth golden words in advance of his 
deeds, and always doeth more than he promiseth; for he 
seeketh his own down-going. 

I love him who justifieth the future ones, and redeemed! 
the past ones: for he is willing to succumb through the present 

I love him who chasteneth his God, because he loveth his 
God; for he must succumb through the wrath of his God. 

I love him whose soul is deep even in the wounding, and 
may succumb through a small matter: thus goeth he willingly 
over the bridge. 

I love him whose soul is so overfull that he forgetteth him- 
self, and all things are in him: thus all things become his down- 

I love him who is of a free spirit and a free heart: thus is his 
head only the bowels of his heart; his heart, however, causeth 
his down-going. 

I love all who are like heavy drops falling one by one out of 
the dark cloud that lowereth over man: they herald the coming 
of the lightning, and succumb as heralds. 

Lo, I am a herald of the lightning, and a heavy drop out of 
the cloud: the lightning, however, is the Superman , — 


When Zarathustra had spoken these words, he again looked 
at the people, and was silent. '‘There they stand,” said he to his 
heart; "there they laugh: they understand me not; I am not the 
mouth for these ears. 

Must one first batter their ears, that they may learn to hear 
with their eyes? Must one clatter like kettledrums ‘and peni- 


tential preachers? Or do they only believe the stammerer? 

They have something whereof they are proud. What do they 
call it, that which maketh them proud? Culture, they call it; it 
distinguisheth them from the goatherds. 

They dislike, therefore, to hear of 'contempt* of themselves. 
So I will appeal to their pride. 

I will speak unto them of the most contemptible thing: 
that, however, is the last manr 

And thus spake Zarathustra unto the people: 

It is time for man to fix his goal. It is time for man to plant 
the germ of his highest hope. 

Still is his soil rich enough for it. But that soE will one day 
be poor and exhausted, and no lofty tree will any longer be 
able to grow thereon. 

Alas! there cometh the time when man will no longer launch 
the arrow of his longing beyond man — ^and the string of his 
bow will have unlearned to whiaa! 

I tell you: one must still have chaos in one, to give birth to 
a dancing star. I tell you: ye have still chaos in you. 

Alas! There cometh the time when man will no longer give 
birth to any star. Alas! There cometh the time of the most 
despicable man, who can no longer despise himself. 

Lo! I show you the last man. 

*'What is love? What is creation? What is longing? What is 
a star?” — so asketh the last man and blinketh. 

The earth hath then become small, and on it there hoppeth 
the last man who maketh everything small. His species is in- 
eradicable like that of the ground-filea; the last man liveth 

''We have discovered happiness** — ^say the last men, and 
blink thereby. 

They have left the regions where it is hard to live; for they 


need warmth. One still loveth one’s neighbour and rubbeth 
against him; for one needeth warmth. 

Turning ill and being distrustful, they consider sinful: they 
walk warily. He is a fool who still stumbleth over stones or 

A little poison now and then: that maketh pleasant dreams. 
And much poison at last for a pleasant death. 

One still worketh, for work is a pastime. But one is careful 
lest the pastime should hurt one. 

One no longer becometh poor or rich; both are too burden- 
some. Who stiU wanteth to rule? Who still wanteth to obey? 
Both are too burdensome. 

No shepherd, and one herd! Everyone wanteth the same; 
everyone is equal: he who hath other sentiments goeth volun- 
tarily into the madhouse. 

“Formerly all the world was insane,” — ^say the subtlest of 
them, and blink thereby. 

They are clever and know all that hath happened: so there 
is no end to their raillery. People still fall out, but are soon 
reconciled — otherwise it spoileth their stomachs. 

They have their little pleasures for the day, and their little 
pleasures for the night, but they have a regard for health. 

“We have discovered happiness/’ — ^say the last men, and 
blink thereby. — 

And here ended the first discourse of Z^thustra, which is 
also called “The Prologue’*, for at this point the shouting and 
mirth of the multitude interrupted him. “Give us this last man, 
O Zarathustra,” — they called out — ^“make us into these last 
men! Then will we make thee a present of the Superman!” 
And all the people exulted and smacked their lips. Zarathustra, 
however, turned sad, and said to his heart: 

“Thqr understand me not: I am not the mouth for these ears. 

zarathustra’s prologue 13 

Too long, perhaps, have I lived in the mountains; too much 
have I hearkened unto the brooks and trees: now do I speak 
unto them as imto the goatherds. 

Calm is my soul, and clear, like the mountains in the morn- 
ing. But they think me cold, and a mocker with terrible j ests. 

And now do they look at me and laugh: and while they 
laugh they hate me too. There is ice in their laughter." 

Then, however, something happened which made every 
mouth mute and every eye fixed. In the meantime, of course, 
the rope-dancer had commenced his performance: he had come 
out at a little door, and was going along the rope which was 
stretched between two towers, so that it hung above the market- 
place and the people. When he was just midway across, the 
little door opened once more, and a gaudily-dressed fellow like 
a buffoon sprang out, and went rapidly after the first one. "Go 
on, halt-foot," cried his frightful voice, "go on, lazy-bones, 
interloper, sallow-face! — lest I tickle thee with my heel! What 
dost thou here between the towers? In the tower is the place 
for thee, thou shouldst be locked up; to one better than thyself 
thou blockest the way!" — ^And with every word he came nearer 
and nearer the first one. When, however, he was but a step 
behind, there happened the frightful thing which made every 
mouth mute and every eye fixed — ^he uttered a yell like a devil, 
and jumped over the other who was in his way. The latter, 
however, when he thus saw his rival triumph, lost at the same 
time his head and his footing on the rope; he threw his pole 
away, and shot downward faster than it, like an eddy of arms 
and legs, into the depth. The market-place and the people were 

14 zarathustra’s prologue 

like the sea when the storm cometh on: they all flew apart and 
in disorder, especially where the body was about to fall. 

Zarathustra, however, remained standing, and just beside 
him fell the body, badly injured and disfigured, but not yet 
dead. After a while consciousness returned to the shattered 
man, and he saw Zarathustra kneeling beside him. **What art 
thou doing there?’* said he at last, knew long ago that the 
devil would trip me up. Now he draggeth me to hell; wilt thou 
prevent him?” 

"'On mine honour, my friend,” answered Zarathustra, 
"there is nothing of all that whereof thou speakest: there is no 
devil and no hell. Thy soul will be dead even sooner than thy 
body; fear, therefore, nothing any more!” 

The man looked up distrustfully. "If thou speakest the 
truth,” said he, ""I lose nothing when I lose my life. I am not 
much more than an animal which hath been taught to dance by 
blows and scanty fare.” 

"Not at all,” said Zarathustra, "Thou hast made danger thy 
calling; therein there is nothing contemptible. Now thou 
perishest by thy calling: therefore will I bury thee with mine 
own hands.” 

When Zarathustra had said this the dying one did not reply 
further; but he moved his hand as if he sought the hand of 
Zarathustra in gratitude. 


Meanwhile the evening came on, and the market-place 
veiled itself in gloom. Then the people dispersed, for even 
curiosity and terror become fatigued. Zarathustra, however, 
ftill sat beside the dead man on the ground, absorbed in 

zarathustra’s prologue 15 

thought: so he forgot the time. But at last it became night, and 
a cold wind blew upon the lonely one. Then arose Zarathustra 
and said to his heart: 

Verily, a fine catch of fish hath 2^arathustra made to-day! It is 
not a man he hath caught, but a corpse. 

Sombre is human life, and as yet without meaning : a buffoon 
may be fateful to it. 

I want to teach men the sense of their existence, which is the 
Superman, the lightning out of the dark doud — man. 

But still am I far from them, and my sense speaketh not unto 
their sense. To men I am still something between a fool and 
a corpse. 

Gloomy is the night, gloomy are the ways of Zarathustra. 
Come, thou cold and stiff companion! I carry thee to the place 
where I shall bury thee with mine own hands. 


When Zarathustra had said this to his heart, he put the 
corpse upon his shoulders and set out on his way. Yet had he 
not gone a hundred steps, when there stole a man up to him 
and whispered in his ear — ^and lo! he that spake was the buf- 
foon from the tower. "Leave this town, O Zarathustra,’" said 
he, "there are too many here who hate thee. The good and just 
hate thee, and call thee their enemy and despiser; the believers 
in the orthodox belief hate thee, and call thee a danger to the 
multitude. It was thy good fortune to be laughed at: and verily 
thou spakest like a buffoon. It was thy good fortune to associate 
with the dead dog; by so humiliating thyself thou hast saved 
thy life today. Depart, however, from this town, — or tomor- 
row I shall jump over thee, a living man over a dead one.” And 


when he had said this, the buffoon vanished; Zarathustra, how- 
ever, went on through the dark streets. 

At the gate of the town the grave-diggers met him: they 
shone their torch on his face, and, recognising Zarathustra, 
they sorely derided him. **Zarathustra is carrying away the dead 
dog: a fine thing that Zarathustra hath turned a grave-digger! 
For our hands are too cleanly for that roast. Will Zarathustra 
steal the bite from the devil? Well then, good luck to the re- 
past! If only the devil is not a better thief than Zarathustra! — 
he will steal them both, he will eat them both!" And they 
laughed among themselves, and put their heads together. 

Zhrathustra made no answer thereto, but went on his way. 
When he had gone on for two hours, past forests and swamps, 
he had heard too much of the hungry howling of the wolves, 
and he himself became hungry. So he halted at a lonely house 
in which a light was burning. 

**Hunger attacketh me," said Zarathustra, *like a robber. 
Among forests and swamps my hunger attacketh me, and late 
in the night. 

**Strange humours hath my hunger. Often it cometfa to me 
only after a repast, and all day it hath failed to come: where 
hath it been?" 

And thereupon Zarathustra knocked at the door of the 
house. An old man appeared, who carried a light, and asked; 
"Who cometh unto me and my bad sleep?" 

"A living man and a dead one," said Zarathustra. "Give me 
something to eat and drink, I forgot it during the day. He that 
feedeth the hungry refreshed! his own soul, saith wisdom." 

The old man withdrew, but came back immediately and 
offered Zarathustra bread and wine. "A bad country for the 
hungry," said he; "that is why I live here. Animal and man 
come unto me, the anchorite. But bid thy companion eat and 

zarathustra’s prologue 


drink also, he is wearier than thou/’ Zarathustra answered: 

companion is dead; I shall hardly be able to persuade him 
to eat.” 'That doth not concern me,” said the old man sullenly; 
"he that knocketh at my door must take what I offer him. Eat, 
and fare ye well!” — 

Thereafter Zarathustra again went on for two hours, tmst- 
ing to the path and the light of the stars: for he was an experi- 
enced night-walker, and liked to look into the face of all that 
slept When the morning dawned, however, Zarathustra found 
himself in a thick forest, and no path was any longer visible. 
He then put the dead man in a hollow tree at his head — ^for he 
wanted to protect him from the wolves — ^and laid himself 
down on the ground and moss. And immediately he fell asleep, 
tired in body, but with a tranquil soul. 


Long slept Zarathustra; and not only the rosy dawn passed 
over his head, but also the morning. At last, however, his eyes 
opened, and amazedly he gazed into the forest and the stillness, 
amazedly he gazed into himself. Then he arose quickly, like a 
seafarer who all at once seeth the land; and he shouted for joy: 
for he saw a new tmth. And he spake thus to his heart: 

A light hath dawned upon me: I need companions — ^living 
ones; not dead companions and corpses, which I catty with me 
where I will. 

But I need living companions, who will follow me because 
they want to follow themselves — ^and to the place where I will. » 
A light hath dawned upon me. Not to the people is Zarathustra 
to speak, but to companions! Zarathustra shall not be the herd’s 
herdsman and hound! 

i8 zarathustra’s prologue 

To allure many from the herd — ^for that purpose have I 
cDme. The people and the herd must be angry with me: a rob- 
ber shall Zarathustra be called by the herdsmen. 

Herdsmen, I say, but they call themselves the good and just. 
Herdsmen, I say, but they call themselves the believers in the 
orthodox belief. 

Behold the good and just! Whom do they hate most? Him 
who brealceth up their tables of values, the breaker, the law- 
breaker: — ^he, however, is the creator. 

Behold the believers of all beliefs! Whom do they hate 
most? Him who breaketh up their tables of values, the breaker, 
the law-breaker — he, however, is the creator. 

Companions, the creator seeketh, not corpses — and not 
herds or believers either. Fellow-creators the creator seeketh — 
those who grave new values on new tables. 

Companions, the creator seeketh, and fellow-reapers: for 
everything is ripe for the harvest with him. But he lacketh the 
hundred sickles: so he plucketh the ears of corn and is vexed. 

Companions, the creator seeketh, and such as know how to 
whet their sickles. Destroyers, will they be called, and despisers 
of good and evil. But they are the reapers and rejoicers. 

Fellow-creators, Zarathustra seeketh; fellow-reapers and 
fellow-rejoicers, Zarathustra seeketh: what hath he to do with 
herds and herdsmen and corpses! 

And thou, my first companion, rest in peace! Well have I 
buried thee in thy hollow tree; well have I hid thee from the 

But I part from thee; the time hath arrived. ’Twixt rosy 
dawn and rosy dawn there came unto me a new truth. 

I am not to be a herdsman, I am not to be a grave-digger. 
Not any more will I discourse unto the people; for the last time 
have I spoken unto the dead. 

zarathustra’s prologue 19 

With the creators, the reapers, and the rejoicers will I asso- 
ciate: the rainbow will I show them, and all the stairs to the 

To the lone-dwellers will I sing my song, and to the twain- 
dwellers; and unto him who hath still ears for the unheard, 
will I make the heart heavy with my happiness. 

I make for my goal, I follow my course; over the loitering 
and tardy will I leap. Thus let my oa-going be their down- 


This had Zarathustra said to his heart when the sun stood at 
noon-tide. Then he looked inquiringly aloft, — ^for he heard 
above him the sharp call of a bird. And behold! An eagle swept 
through the air in wide circles, and on it hung a serpent, not 
like a prey, but like a friend: for it kept itself coiled round the 
eagle’s neck. 

'They are mine animals,” said Zarathustra, and rejoiced in 
his heart. 

"The proudest animal under the sun, and the wisest animal 
under the sun, — ^they have come out to reconnoitre. 

They want to know whether Zarathustra still liveth. Verily, 
do I still live? 

More dangerous have I found it among men than among 
animals; in dangerous paths goeth Zarathustra. Let mine ani- 
mals lead me!” 

When Zarathustra had said this, he remembered the words 
of the saint in the forest. Then he sighed and spake thus to 
bis beast: 

"Would that I were wiser! Would that I were wise from the 
very heart, like my serpent! 


zarathustra’s prologue 

But I am asking the impossible. Therefore do I ask my pride 
to go always with my wisdom! 

And if my wisdom should some day forsake me: — alas! it 
loveth to fly away! — ^may my pride then fly with my folly!'' 

Thus began Zarathustra's down-going. 



I. The Three Metamorphoses 

Three metamorphoses of the spirit do I designate to you: how 
the spirit becometh a camel, the camel a lion, and the lion at 
last a child. 

Many heavy things are there for the spirit, the strong load- 
bearing spirit in which reverence dwelleth: for the heavy and 
the heaviest longeth its strength. 

What is heavy? so asketh the load-bearing spirit; then 
kneeleth it down like the camel, and wanteth to be well laden. 

What is the heaviest thing, ye heroes? asketh the load-bear- 
ing spirit, that I may take it upon me and rej oice in my strength. 

Is it not this: To humiliate oneself in order to mortify one’s 
pride? To exhibit one’s folly in order to mock at one’s wisdom? 

Or is it this: To desert our cause when it celebrated! its 
triumph? To ascend high mountains to tempt the tempter? 

Or is it this: To feed on the acorns and grass of knowledge, 
and for the sake of truth to suffer hunger of soul? 

Or is it this: To be sick and dismiss comforters, and make 
friends of the deaf, who never hear thy requests? 

Or is it this: To go into foul water when it is the water of 
truth, and not disclaim cold frogs and hot toads? 

Or is it this: To love those who despise us, and give one’s 
hand to the phantom when it is going to frighten us? 

All these heaviest things the load-bearing spirit taketh upon 
itself: and like the camel, which, when laden, hasteneth into 
the wilderness, so hasteneth the spirit into its wilderness. 




But in the loneliest wilderness happeneth the second meta- 
morphosis: here the spirit becometh a lion; freedom will it 
capture, and lordship in its own wilderness. 

Its last Lord it here seeketh: hostile will it be to him, and to 
its last God; for victory will it struggle with the great dragon. 

What is the great dragon which the spirit is no longer in- 
clined to call Lord and God? "Thou-shalt,” is the great dragon 
called. But the spirit of the lion saith, '1 will.’* 

'Thou-shalt,** lieth in its path, sparkling with gold — a scale- 
covered beast; and on every scale glittereth golden, *'Thou 

The values of a thousand years glitter on those scales, and 
thus speaketh the mightiest of all dragons: '*A11 the values of 
things — ^glitter on me. 

All values have already been created, and all created values 
— do I represent. Verily, there shall be no T will* any more.** 
Thus speaketh the dragon. 

My brethren, wherefore is there need of the lion in the 
spirit? Why sufficeth not the beast of burden, which re- 
nounceth and is reverent? 

To create new values — ^that, even the lion cannot yet accom- 
plish: but to create itself freedom for new creating — that can 
the might of the lion do. 

To aeate itself freedom, and give a holy Nay even unto 
duty: for that, my brethren, there is need of the lion. 

To assume the ride to new values — ^that is the most formi- 
dable assumption for a load-bearing and reverent spirit. Verily, 
unto such a spirit it is preying, and the work of a beast of prey. 

As its holiest, it once loved **Thou-shalt**: now is it forced 
to find illusion and arbitrariness even in the holiest things, that 
it may capture freedom from its love; the lion is needed for 
this capture. 


But tell me, my brethren, what the child can do, which even 
the lion could not do? Why hath the preying lion still to be- 
come a child? 

Innocence is the child, and forgetfulness, a new beginning, 
a game, a self -rolling wheel, a first movement, a holy Yea. 

Aye, for the game of creating, my brethren, there is needed 
a holy Yea unto life: its own will, willeth now the spirit; his 
own world winneth the world’s outcast. 

Three metamorphoses of the spirit have I designated to you: 
how the spirit became a camel, the camel a lion, and the lion 
at last a child. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. And at that time he abode in the 
town which is called The Pied Cow. 

2, The Academic Chairs of Virtue 

People commended unto Zarathustra a wise man, as one who 
could discourse well about sleep and virtue: greatly was he 
honoured and rewarded for it, and all the youths sat before 
his chair. To him went Zarathustra, and sat among the youths 
before his chair. And thus spake the wise man: 

Respect and modesty in presence of sleep! That is the first 
thing! And to go out of the way of all who sleep badly and 
keep awake at night! 

Modest is even the thief in presence of sleep: he always 
stealeth softly through the night. Immodest, however, is the 
night-watchman; immodestly he carrieth his horn. 


No small art is it to sleep: it is necessary for that purpose 
to keep awake all day. 

Ten times a day must thou overcome thyself: that causeth 
wholesome weariness, and is poppy to the soul. 

Ten times must thou reconale again with thyself; for over- 
coming is bitterness, and badly sleep the unreconciled. 

Ten truths must thou find during the day; otherwise wilt 
thou seek truth during the night, and thy soul will have been 

Ten times must thou laugh during the day, and be cheerful; 
otherwise thy stomach, the father of aflBiiction, will disturb 
thee in the night 

Few people know it, but one must have all the virtues in 
order to sleep well. Shall I bear false witness? Shall I commit 

Shall I covet my neighbour’s maidservant? All that would ill 
accord with good sleep. 

And even if one have all the virtues, there is still one thing 
needful: to send the virtues themselves to sleep at the right 

That they may not quarrel with one another, the good 
females! And about thee, thou unhappy one! 

Peace with God and thy neighbour: so desireth good sleep. 
And peace also with thy neighbour’s devil! Otherwise it will 
haunt thee in the night. 

Honour to the government, and obedience, and also to the 
crooked government! So desireth good sleep. How can I help 
it, if power liketh to walk on crooked legs? 

He who leadeth his sheep to the greenest pasture, shall 
always be for me the best shepherd: so doth it accord with 
good sleep. 


Many honours I want not, nor great treasures: they excite 
the spleen. But it is bad sleeping without a good name and a 
little treasure. 

A small company is more welcome to me than a bad one: but 
they must come and go at the right time. So doth it accord 
with good sleep. 

Well, also, do the poor in spirit please me: they promote 
sleep. Blessed are they, especially if one always give in to them. 

'Thus passeth the day unto the virtuous. When night cometh, 
then take I good care not to summon sleep. It dislifceth to be 
summoned — ^sleep, the lord of the virtues! 

But I think of what I have done and thought during the day. 
Thus ruminating, patient as a cow, I ask myself: What were thy 
ten overcomings? 

And what were the ten reconciliations, and the ten truths, 
and the ten laughters with which my heart enjoyed itself? 

Thus pondering, and cradled by forty thoughts, it over- 
taketh me all at once — sleep, the unsummoned, the lord of the 

Sleep tappeth on mine eye, and it tumetib heavy. Sleep 
toucheth my mouth, and it remaineth open. 

Verily, on soft soles doth it come to me, the dearest of 
thieves, and stealeth from me my thoughts: stupid do I then 
stand, like this academic chair. 

But not much longer do I then stand: I already lie. — 

When Zarathustra heard the wise man thus speak, he 
laughed in his heart: for thereby had a light dawned upon him 
And thus spake he to his heart: 

A fool seemeth this wise man with his forty thoughts: but 
I believe he knoweth well how to sleep. 

Happy even is he who liveth near fliis wise man! Such slecj^ 
is contagious — even through a thick wall it is conta^ous. 



A magic resideth even in his academic chair. And not in vain 
did the youths sit before the preacher of virtue. 

His wisdom is to keep awake in order to sleep well. And 
verily, if life had no sense, and had I to choose nonsense, this 
would be the desirablest nonsense for me also. 

Now know I well what people sought formerly above all else 
when they sought teachers of virtue. Good sleep they sought 
for themselves, and poppy-head virtues to promote it! 

To all those belauded sages of the academic chairs, wisdom 
was sleep without dreams: th^ knew no higher significance 
of life. 

Even at present, to be sure, there are some like this preacher 
of virtue, and not always so honourable: but their time is past. 
And not much longer do they stand: there they already lie. 

Blessed are those drowsy ones: for they shall soon nod to 
sleep. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra, 


Once on a time, Zarathustra also cast his fancy beyond man, 
like all backworldsmen. The work of a suffering and tortured 
God, did the world then seem to me. 

The dream — and diction — of a God, did the world then 
seem to me; coloured vapours before the eyes of a divinely 
dissatisfied one. 

Good and evil, and joy and woe, and I and thou — coloured 



vapours did they seem to me before creative eyes. The creator 
wished to look away from himself, — ^thereupon he created the 

Intoxicating joy is it for the sufferer to look away from his 
suffering and forget himself. Intoxicating joy and self -forget- 
ting, did the world once seem to me. 

This world, the eternally imperfect, an eternal contradic- 
tion’s image and imperfect image — ^an intoxicating joy to its 
imperfect creator: — ^thus did the world once seem to me. 

Thus, once on a time, did I also cast my fancy beyond man, 
like all backworldsmen. Beyond man, forsooth.^ 

Ah, ye brethren, that God whom I created was human work 
and human madness, like all the gods! 

A man was he, and only a poor fragment of a man and ego. 
Out of mine own ashes and glow it came unto me, that phan- 
tom. And verily, it came not unto me from the beyond! 

What happened, my brethren? I surpassed myself, the suf- 
fering one; I carried mine own ashes to the mountain; a 
brighter flame I contrived for myself. And lo! Thereupon the 
phantom withdrew from me! 

To me the convalescent would it now be suffering and 
torment to believe in such phantoms : suffering would it now be 
to me, and humiliation. Thus speak I to backworldsmen. 

Suffering was it, and impotence — ^that created all back- 
worlds; and the short madness of happiness, which only the 
greatest sufferer experienceth. 

Weariness, which seeketh to get to the ultimate with one 
leap, with a death-leap; a poor ignorant weariness, imwilling 
even to will any longer: that created all gods and badcworlds. 

Believe me, my brethren! It was the body which despaired 
of the body — ^it groped with the fingers of the infatuated spirit 
at the ultimate walls. 



Believe me, my brethren! It was the body which despaired of 
the earth — ^it heard the bowels of existence speaking unto it» 

And then it sought to get through the ultimate walls with its 
head — ^and not with its head only — ^into ’*the other world.” 

But that *'other world” is well concealed from man, that 
dehumanised, inhuman world, which is a celestial naught; and 
the bowels of existence do not speak unto man, except as man. 

Verily, it is dijEcult to prove all being, and hard to make it 
speak. Tell me, ye brethren, is not the strangest of all things 
best proved? 

Yea, this ego, with its contradiction and perplexity, speaketh 
most uprightly of its being — ^this creating, willing, evaluing 
ego, which is the measure and value of things. 

And this most upright existence, the ego — ^it speaketh of the 
body, and still implieth the body, even when it museth and 
raveth and fluttereth with broken wings. 

Always more uprightly learneth it to speak, the ego; and 
the more it learneth, the more doth it find titles, and honours 
for the body and the earth. 

A new pride taught me mine ego, and that teach I unto 
men: no longer to thrust one’s head into the sand of celestial 
things, but to carry it freely, a terrestrial head, which giveth 
meaning to the earth! 

A new will teach I xmto men: to choose that path which 
man hath followed blindly, and to approve of it — ^and no 
longer to slink aside from it, like the side and perishing! 

The sick and perishing — ^it was they who despised the body 
and the earth, and invented the heavenly world, and the re- 
deeming blood-drops; but even those sweet and sad poisons 
they borrowed from the body and the earth! 

From their misery they sought escape, and the stars were 


3 ^ 

too remote for them. Then they sighed: ''O that there were 
heavenly paths by which to steal into another existence ancj 
into happiness!*’ Then they contrived for themselves their by- 
paths and bloody draughts! 

Beyond the sphere of their body and this earth they now 
fancied themselves transported, these ungrateful ones. But to 
what did they owe the convulsion and rapture of their trans- 
port? To their body and this earth. 

Gentle is Zarathustra to the sickly. Verily, he is not indig- 
nant at their modes of consolation and ingratitude. May they 
become convalescents and overcomers, and create higher bodies 
for themselves! 

Neither is Zarathustra indignant at a convalescent who 
looketh tenderly on his delusions, and at midnight stealeth 
roimd the grave of his God; but sickness and a sick frame re- 
main even in his tears. 

Many sickly ones have there always been among those who 
muse, and languish for God; violently they hate the discern- 
ing ones, and the latest of virtues, which is uprightness. 

Backward they always gaze toward dark ages: then, indeed,, 
were delusion and faith something different.* Raving of the 
reason was likeness to God, and doubt was sin. 

Too well do I know those godlike ones: they insist on being 
believed in, and that doubt is sin. Too well, also, do I know 
what they themselves most believe in. 

Verily, not in backworlds and redeeming blood-drops: but 
in the body do they also believe most; and.their own body is 
for them the thing-in-itself . 

But it is a sickly thing to them, and gladly would they get 
out of their sidn. Therefore hearken they to the preachers of 
death, and themselves preach backworlds. 



Hearken rather, my brethren, to the voice of the healthy 
body; it is a more upright and pure voice. 

More uprightly and purely speaketh the healthy body, per- 
fect and square-built; and it speaketh of the meaning of the 
earth. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

4. TheDespisersoftheBody 

To THE despisers of the body will I speak my word. I wish 
them neither to learn afresh, nor teach anew, but only to bid 
farewell to their own bodies, — ^and thus be dumb. 

'*Body am I, and soul” — so saith the child. And why should 
one not speak like children? 

But the awakened one, the knowing one, saith: '"Body am I 
entirely, and nothing more; and soul is only the name of some- 
thing in the body.” 

The body is a big sagacity, a plurality with one sense, a war 
and a peace, a flock and a shepherd. 

An instrument of thy body is also thy little sagacity, my 
brother, which thou callest "'spirit” — ^a little instrument and 
plaything of thy big sagadty. 

"Ego,” sayest thou, and art proud of that word. But the 
greater thing — in which thou art unwilling to believe — ^is thy 
body with its big sagacity; it saith not "*ego,” but doeth it. 

What the sense feeleth, what the spirit discerneth, hath 
never its end in itself. But sense and spirit would fain persuade 
thee that they are the end of all things : so vain are they. 



Instruments and playthings are sense and spirit: behind 
them there is still the Self. The Self seeketh with the eyes of 
the senses, it hearkeneth also with the ears of the spirit. 

Ever hearkeneth the Self, and seeketh; it compareth, mas- 
tereth, conqueretb, and destroyeth. It ruleth, and is also the 
ego’s ruler. 

Behind thy thoughts and feelings, my brother, there is a 
mighty lord, an unknown sage — ^it is called Self; it dwelleth in 
thy body, it is thy body. 

There is more sagacity in thy body than in thy best wis- 
dom. And who then knoweth why thy body requireth just thy 
best wisdom? 

Thy Self laugheth at thine ego, and its proud prancings. 
''What are these prancings and flights of thought unto me?” 
it saith to itself. "A by-way to my purpose. I am the leading- 
string of the ego, and the prompter of its notions.” 

The Self saith xmto the ego: 'Teel pain!” And thereupon it 
suffereth, and thinketh how it may put an end thereto — ^and for 
that very purpose it /s meant to think. 

Tlie Self saith imto the ego: "Feel pleasure!” Thereupon it 
rejoiceth, and thinketh how it may ofttimes rejoice — ^and for 
that very purpose it is meant to think. 

To the despisers of the body will I speak a word. That they 
despise is caused by their esteem. What is it that created 
esteeming and despising and worth and will? 

The creating Self created for itself esteeming and despising, 
it created for itself joy and woe. The creating body created for 
itself spirit, as a hand to its will. 

Even in your folly and despising ye each serve your Self, 
ye despisers of the body. I tell you, your very Self wantetfa 
to die, and tumeth away from life. 

No longer can your Self do that which it desireth most:— 


create beyond itself. That is what it desireth most; that is all 
its fervour. 

But it is now too late to do so: — ^so your Self wishetfa to 
succumb, ye despisers of the body. 

To succumb— so wisheth your Self; and therefore have ye 
become despisers of the body. For ye can no longer create be- 
yond yourselves. 

And therefore are ye now angry with life and with the earth. 
And unconscious envy is in the sidelong look of your contempt. 

I go not your way, ye despisers of the body! Ye are no 
bridges for me to the Superman! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

5 . Joys and Passions 

My brother, when thou hast a virtue, and it is thine own 
virtue, thou hast it in common with no one. 

To be sure, thou wouldst call it by name and caress it; thou 
wouldst pull its ears and amuse thyself with it. 

And lo! Then hast thou its name in common with the 
people, and hast become one of the people and the herd with 
thy virtue! 

Better for thee to say: 'Tneffable is it, and nameless, that 
which is pain and sweetness to my soul, and also the hunger of 
my bowels.” 

Let thy virtue be too high for the familiarity of names, and 
if thou must speak of it, be not ashamed to stammer about it. 


Thus Speak and stammer: "That is my good, that do I love, 
thus doth it please me entirely, thus ordy do I desire the good. 

Not as the law of a God do I desire it, not as a human law 
or a human need do I desire it; it is not to be a guide-post for 
me to superearths and paradises. 

An earthly virtue is it which I love: litde prudence is 
therein, and the least everyday wisdom. 

But that bird built its nest beside me; tiierefore, I love and 
cherish it — ^now sitteth it beside me on its golden eggs.” 

Thus shouldst thou stammer, and praise thy virtue. 

Once hadst thou passions and calledst them evil. But now 
hast thou only hy virtues; they grew out of thy passions. 

Thou implantedst thy highest aim into the heart of those 
passions: then became th^ thy virtues and joys. 

And though thou wert of the race of the hot-tempered, or 
of the voluptuous, or of the fanatical, or the vindictive; 

All thy passions in the end became virtues, and all thy devils 

Once hadst thou wild dogs in thy cellar: but fhqr changed 
at last into birds and charming songstresses. 

Out of thy poisons brewedst thou balsam for thyself; thy 
cow, affliction, milkedst thou — ^now ddnketh thou the sweet 
milk of her udder. 

And nothing evil growedi in thee any longer, unless it be 
the evil that growetfa out of the conflict of thy virtues. 

My brother, if thou be fortunate, then wilt thou have one 
virtue and no more: thus goest thou easier over the bridge. 

Illustrious is it to have many virtues, but a hard lot; and 
many a one hath gone into the wilderness and killed himself, 
because he was weary of being the battle and battlefield of 


My brother, are war and battle evil? Necessary, however, is 
the evil; necessary are the envy and the distrust and the back- 
biting among the virtues. 

Lo! how each of thy virtues is covetous of the highest place; 
it wanteth thy whole spirit to be its herald, it wanteth thy whole 
power, in wrath, hatred, and love. 

Jealous is every virtue of the others, and a dreadful thing is 
jealousy. Even virtues may succumb by jealousy. 

He whom the flame of jealousy encompasseth, turneth at 
last, like the scorpion, the poisoned sting against himself. 

Ah! my brother, hast thou never seen a virtue backbite and 
stab itself? 

Man is something that hath to be surpassed: and therefore 
shalt thou love thy virtues, — ^for thou wilt succumb by them. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

6. The Pale Criminal 

Ye do not mean to slay, ye judges and sacrificers, until the 
animal hath bowed its head? Lo! the pale criminal hath bowed 
his head : out of his eye speaketh the great contempt. 

‘‘Mine ego is something which is to be surpassed: mine ego 
is to me the great contempt of man”: so speaketh it out of 
that eye. 

When he judged himself — ^that was his supreme moment; 
let not the exalted one relapse again into his low estate! 

There is no salvation for him who thus suffereth from him- 
self, unless it be speedy death. 


Your slaying, ye judges, shall be pity, and not revenge; 
and in that ye slay, see to it that ye yourselves justify life! 

It is not enough that ye should reconcile with him whom 
ye slay. Let your sorrow be love to the Superman: thus will ye 
justify your own survival! 

''Enemy’’ shall ye say but not "villain,” "invalid” shall ye 
say but not "wretch,” "fool” shall ye say but not "sinner.” 

And thou, red judge, if thou would say audibly all thou hast 
done in thought, then would every one cry: "Away with the 
nastiness and the virulent reptile!” 

But one thing is the thought, another thing is the deed, and 
another thing is the idea of the deed. The wheel of causality 
doth not roll between them. 

An idea made this pale man pale. Adequate was he for his 
deed when he did it, but the idea of it, he could not endure 
when it was done. 

Evermore did he now see himself as the doer of one deed. 
Madness, I call this: the exception reversed itself to the rule in 

The streak of chalk bewitcheth the hen; the stroke he struck 
bewitched his weak reason. Madness after the deed, I call this. 

Hearken, ye judges! There is another madness besides, and 
it is before the deed. Ah! ye have not gone deep enough into 
this soul! 

Thus speaketh the red judge: "Why did this criminal com- 
mit murder.^ He meant to rob.” I tell you, however, that his 
soul wanted blood, not booty: he thirsted for the happiness of 
the knife! 

But his weak reason understood not this madness, and it 
persuaded him. "What matter about blood!” it said; "wishest 
thou not, at least, to make booty thereby.^ Or take revenge?” 


And he hearkened unto his weak reason: like lead lay its 
words upon him — ^thereupon he robbed when he murdered. 
He did not mean to be ashamed of his madness. 

And now once more lieth the lead of his guilt upon him, 
and once more is his weak reason so benumbed, so paralysed, 
and so dull. 

Could he only shake his head, then would his burden roll off; 
but who shaketh that head? 

What is this man? A mass of diseases that reach out into 
the world through the spirit; there they want to get their 

What is this man? A coil of wild serpents that are sddom 
at peace among themselves — ^so they go forth apart and sedc 
prey in the world. 

Look at that poor body! What it suffered and craved, the 
poor soul interpreted to itself — ^it interpreted it as murderous 
desire, and eagerness for the happiness of the knife. 

Him who now tumeth sick, the evil overtaketh which is 
now the evil : he seeketh to cause pain with that which causeth 
him pain. But there have been other ages, and another evil and 

Once was doubt evil, and the will to Self. Then the invalid 
became a heretic or sorcerer; as heretic or sorcerer he suffered, 
and sought to cause suffering. 

But this will not enter your ears; it hurtetfa your good 
people, ye tell me. But what doth it matter to me about your 
good people! 

Many things in your good people cause me disgust, and 
verily, not their evil. I would that th^ had a madness by whidi 
they succumbed, like this pale criminal! 

Verily, I would that their madness were called truth, or 


fidelity. Of justice: but they have their virtue in order to live 
long, and in wretched self-complacency. 

I am a railing alongside the torrent; whoever is able to grasp 
me may grasp me! Your crutch, however, I am not — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

7 . Reading and Writing 

Of all that is written, I love only what a person hath written 
with his blood. Write with blood, and thou wilt find that blood 

is spirit 

It is no easy task to understand unfamiliar blood; I hate the 
reading idlers. 

He who knoweth the reader, doeth nothing more for the 
reader. Another century of readers — ^and spirit itself will stink. 

Every one being allowed to learn to read, ruineth in the long 
run not only writing but also thinking. 

Once spirit was God, then it became man, and now it even 
becometh populace. 

He that writeth in blood and proverbs doth not want to be 
read, but learnt by heart 

In the mountains the shortest way is from peak to peak, but 
for that route thou must have long legs. Proverbs should be 
peaks, and those spoken to should be big and tall. 

The atmosphere rare and pure, danger near and the spirit 
full of a joyful wickedness: thus are things well matched. 

I want to have goblins ab<»it me, for I am courageous. The 



courage which scareth away ghosts, createth for itself goblins 
— ^it wanteth to laugh. 

I no longer feel in common with you; the very cloud which I 
see beneath me, the blackness and heaviness at which I laugh 
— that is your thimder-cloud. 

Ye look aloft when ye long for exaltation; and I look down- 
ward because I am exalted. 

Who among you can at the same time laugh and be exalted.^ 

He who climbeth on the highest mountains, laugheth at all 
tragic plays and tragic realities. 

Courageous, unconcerned, scornful, coercive — so wisdom 
wisheth us; she is a woman, and ever loveth only a warrior. 

Ye tell me, 'Xife is hard to bear.” But for what purpose 
should ye have your pride in the morning and your resigna- 
tion in the evening? 

Life is hard to bear: but do not affect to be so delicate! We 
arc all of us fine sumpter asses and she-asses. 

What have we in common with the rose-bud, which 
trembleth because a drop of dew hath formed upon it? 

It is true we love life; not because we are wont to live, but 
because we are wont to love. 

There is always some madness in love. But there is always, 
itlso, some method in madness. 

And to me also, who appreciate life, the butterflies, and 
soap-bubbles, and whatever is like them amongst us, seem most 
to enjoy happiness. 

To see these light, foolish, pretty, lively little sprites flit 
about — ^that moveth Zarathustra to tears and songs. 

I should only believe in a God that would know how to 

And when I saw my devil, I found him serious, thorough. 



profound, solemn: he was the spirit of gravity — ^through him 
all things fall. 

Not by wrath, but by laughter, do we slay. Come, let us slay 
the spirit of gravity! 

I learned to walk; since then have I let myself run. I learned 
to fly; since then I do not need pushing in order to move from a 

Now am I light, now do I fly; now do I see myself under 
myself. Now there danceth a God in me. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

S. The Tree on the Hill 

Zarathustra’s eje had perceived that a certain youth avoided 
him. And as he walked alone one evening over the hills sur- 
rounding the town called ‘'The Pied Cow,” behold, there 
found he the youth sitting leaning against a tree, and gazing 
with wearied look into the valley. Zarathustra thereupon laid 
hold of the tree beside which the youth sat, and spake thus : 

"If I wished to shake this tree with my hands, I should not 
be able to do so. 

But the wind, which we see not, troubleth and bendeth it a 
it listeth. We are sorest bent and troubled by invisible hands.” 

Thereupon the youth arose disconcerted, and said: "I hear 
Zarathustra, and just now was I thinking of him!” Zarathustra 

"Why art thou frightened on that account? — But it is the 
same with man as with the tree. 



The more he seeketh to rise into the height and light, the 
more vigorously do his roots struggle earthward, downward, 
into the dark and deep — into the evil.” 

*'Yea, into the evil!” cried the youth. *‘How is it possible 
that thou hast discovered my soul?” 

Zarathustra smiled, and said: ''Many a soul one will never 
discover, unless one first invent it.” 

"Yea, into the evil!” cried the youth once more. 

"Thou saidst the tmth, Zarathustra. I trust myself no longer 
since I sought to rise into the height, and nobody trusteth me 
any longer; how doth that happen? 

I change too quickly: my to-day refuteth my yesterday. I 
often overleap the steps when I clamber; for so doing, none of 
the steps pardons me. 

When aloft, I find myself always alone. No one speaketh 
unto me; the frost of solitude maketh me tremble. What do I 
seek on the height? 

My contempt and my longing increase together; the higher 
I clamber, the more do I despise him who clambereth. What 
doth he seek on the height? 

How ashamed I am of my clambering and stumbling! How 
I mock at my violent panting! How I hate him who flieth! How 
tired I am on the height!” 

Here the youth was silent. And Zarathustra contemplated 
the tree beside which they stood, and spake thus: 

"This tree standeth lonely here on the hills; it hath grown 
up high above man and beast. 

And if it wanted to speak, it would have none who could 
understand it: so high hath it grown. 

Now it waiteth and waiteth, — ^for what doth it wait? It 
dwelled! too close to the seat of the clouds; it waiteth perhaps 
for the first lightning?” 



When Zkrathustra had said this, the youth called out with 
violent gestures: **Yea, Zarathustra, thou speakest the truth. 
My destruction I longed for, when I desired to be on the 
height, and thou art the lightning for which I waited! Lol 
what have I been since thou hast appeared amongst us? It is 
mine envy of thee that hath destroyed me!” — ^Thus spake the 
youth, and wept bitterly. Zarathustra, however, put his arm 
about him, and led the youth away with him. 

And when they had walked a while together, Zarathustra 
began to speak thus: 

It rendeth my heart. Better than thy words express it, thine 
qres tell me all thy danger. 

As yet thou art not free; thou still seekest freedom. Too un- 
slept hath thy seeking made thee, and too wakeful. 

On the open height wouldst thou be; for the stars thirsteth 
thy soul. But thy bad impulses also thirst for freedom. 

Thy wild dogs want liberty; they bark for joy in their cellar 
when thy spirit endeavoureth to open all prison doors. 

Still art thou a prisoner — ^it seemeth to me — ^who deviseth 
liberty for himself: ah! sharp becometh the soul of such 
prisoners, but also deceitful and wicked. 

To purify himself, is still necessary for the freedman of 
the spirit. Much of the prison and the mould still remaineth 
in him: pure hath his eye still to become. 

Yea, I know thy danger. But by my love and hope I con- 
jure thee: cast not thy love and hope away! 

Noble thou feelest thyself still, and noble others also feel 
thee still, though they bear thee a grudge and cast evil looks. 
Know this, that to everybody a noble one standeth in the way. 

Also to the good, a noble one standeth in die way: and even 
when thqr call him a good man, they want thereby to put him 


The new, would the noble man create, and a new virtue. 
The old, wanteth the good man, and that the old should be 

But it is not the danger of the noble man to turn a good 
man, but lest he should become a blusterer, a scoffer, or a de- 

Ah! I have known noble ones who lost their highest hope. 
And then they disparaged all high hopes. 

Then lived they shamelessly in temporary pleasures, and 
beyond the day had hardly an aim. 

"Spirit is also voluptuousness," — said they. Then broke the 
wings of their spirit; and now it creepeth about, and defileth 
where it gnaweth. 

Once they thought of becoming heroes; but sensualists are 
they now. A trouble and a terror is the hero to them. 

But by my love and hope I conjure thee: cast not away the 
hero in thy soul! Maintain holy thy highest hope! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

g. The Preachers of Death 

There are preachers of death: and the earth is full of those to 
whom desistance from life must be preached. 

Full is the earth of the superfluous; marred is life by the 
many-too-many. May they be decoyed out of this life by the 
"life eternal"! 

"The yellow ones": so are called the preachers of death, or 



"the black ones/' But I will show them unto you in other 
colours besides. 

There are the terrible ones who carry about in themselves 
the beast of prey, and have no choice except lusts or self- 
laceration. And even their lusts are self -laceration. 

They have not yet become men, those terrible ones: may 
they preach desistance from life, and pass away themselves! 

There are the spiritually consumptive ones: hardly are they 
born when they begin to die, and long for doctrines of lassi- 
tude and renunciation. 

They would fain be dead, and we should approve of their 
wish! Let us beware of awakening those dead ones, and of 
damaging those living cofEns! 

They meet an invalid, or an old man, or a corpse — and im- 
mediately they say: "Life is refuted!" 

But they only are refuted, and their eye, which seeth only 
one aspect of existence. 

Shrouded in thick melancholy, and eager for the little 
casualties that bring death: thus do they wait, and clench their 

Or else, they grasp at sweetmeats, and mock at their childish- 
ness thereby: they cling to their straw of life, and mock at their 
still clinging to it. 

Their wisdom speaketh thus: "A fool, he who remaineth 
alive; but so far are we fools! And that is the foolishest thing 
in life!" 

"Life is only suffering": so say others, and lie not. Then see 
to it that ye cease! See to it that the life ceaseth which is only 

And let this be the teaching of your virtue: "Thou shalt 
slay thyself! Thou shalt steal away from thyself!" — 


"Lust is sin/' — so say some who preach death — "let us go 
apart and beget no children!" 

"Giving birth is troublesome/’ — ^say others — "why still give 
birth? One beareth only the unfortunate!" And they also are 
preachers of death, 

"Pity is necessary," — so saith a third party. "Take what I 
have! Take what I am! So much less doth life bind me!" 

Were they consistently pitiful, then would they make their 
neighbours sick of life. To be wicked — ^that would be their true 

But they want to be rid of life; what care they if they bind 
others still faster with their chains and gifts! — 

And ye also, to whom life is rough labour and disquiet, are 
ye not very tired of life? Are ye not very ripe for the sermon 
of death? 

All ye to whom rough labour is dear, and the rapid, new, 
and strange — ^ye put up with yourselves badly; your diligence is 
flight, and the will to self-forgetfulness. 

If ye believed more in life, then would ye devote yourselves 
less to the momentary. But for waiting, ye have not enough of 
capacity in you — ^nor even for idling! 

Everywhere resoundeth the voices of those who preach 
death; and the earth is full of those to whom death hath to be 

Or "life eternal"; it is all the same to me — ^if only they pass 
away quickly! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 




JO, War and Warriors 

By our best enemies we do not want to be spared, nor by 
those either whom we love from the very heart. So let me tell 
you the truth! 

My brethren in war! I love you from the very heart. I am, 
and was ever, your counterpart. And I am also your best enemy. 
So let me tell you the truth! 

I know the hatred and envy of your hearts. Ye are not great 
enough not to know of hatred and envy. Then be great enough 
not to be ashamed of them! 

And if ye cannot be saints of knowledge, then, I pray you, 
be at least its warriors. They are the companions and fore- 
runners of such saintship. 

I see many soldiers; could I but see many warriors! "Uni- 
form"’ one calleth what they wear; may it not be uniform what 
they therewith hide! 

Ye shall be those whose eyes ever seek for an enemy — ^for 
your enemy. And with some of you there is hatred at first sight. 

Your enemy shall ye seek; your war shall ye wage, and for 
the sake of your thoughts! And if your thoughts succumb, 
your uprightness shall still shout triumph thereby! 

Ye shall love peace as a means to new wars — and the short 
peace more than the long. 

You I advise not to work, but to fight. You I advise not to 
peace, but to victory. Let your work be a fight, let your peace 
be a victory! 

One can only be silent and sit peacefully when one hath 
arrow and bow; otherwise one prateth and quarrelletfa. Let 
your peace be a victory! 



Ye say it is the good cause which halloweth even war? I say 
unto you: it is the good war which halloweth every cause. 

War and courage have done more great things than charity. 
Not your sympathy, but your bravery hath hitherto saved the 

"What is good?" ye ask. To be brave is good. Let the little 
girls say: "To be good is what is pretty, and at the same time 

They call you heartless: but your heart is true, and I love 
the bashfulness of your goodwill. Ye are ashamed of your flow, 
and others are ashamed of their ebb. 

Ye are ugly? Well then, my brethren, take the sublime about 
you, the mantle of the ugly! 

And when your soul becometh great, then doth it become 
haughty, and in your sublimity there is wickedness. I know you. 

In wickedness the haughty man and the weakling meet. 
But they misunderstand one another. I know you. 

Ye shall only have enemies to be hated, but not enemies to 
be despised. Ye must be proud of your enemies; then, the suc- 
cesses of your enemies are also your successes. 

Resistance — ^that is the distinction of the slave. Let your 
distinction be obedience. Let your commanding itself be obey- 

To the good warrior soxmdeth "thou shalt" pleasanter than 
"I will." And all that is dear unto you, ye shall first have it 
commanded unto you. 

Let your love to life be love to your highest hope; and let 
your highest hope be the highest thought of life! 

Your highest thought, however, ye shall have it commanded 
unto you by me — ^and it is this: man is something that is to be 



So live your life of obedience and of war! What matter about 
long life! What warrior wisheth to be spared! 

I spare you not, I love you from my very heart, my brethren 
in war! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

II. The J^ew Idol 

Somewhere there are still peoples and herds, but not with us, 
my brethren; here there are states. 

A state? What is that? Well! open now your ears xmto me, 
for now will I say unto you my word concerning the death of 

A state, is called the coldest of all cold monsters. Coldly lieth 
it also; and this lie creepeth from its mouth: ’1, the state, am 
the people.'" 

It is a lie! Creators were they who created peoples, and hung 
a faith and a love over them; thus they served life. 

Destroyers, are they who lay snares for many, and call it the 
state: they hang a sword and a hundred cravings over them. 

Where there is still a people, there the state is not under- 
stood, but hated as the evil eye, and as sin against laws and 

This sign I give imto you: every people speaketh its lan- 
guage of good and evil; this its neighbour understandeth not. 
Its language hath it devised for itself in laws and customs. 

But the state lieth in all languages of good and evil; and 
whatever it saith it lieth; and whatever it hath it hath stolen. 


False is everything in it; with stolen teeth it biteth, the 
biting one. False are even its bowels. 

Confusion of language of good and evil; this sign I give 
unto you as the sign of the state. Verily, the will to death, in- 
dicated! this sign! Verily, it beckoneth unto the preachers of 

Many too many are born: for the superfluous ones was the 
state devised! 

See just how it enticeth them to it, the many-too-many! How 
it swalloweth and cheweth and recheweth them! 

"On earth there is nothing greater than I : it is I who am the 
regulating finger of God'* — ^thus roareth the monster. And not 
only the long-eared and short-sighted fall upon their knees! 

Ah! even in your ears, ye great souls, it whispereth its 
gloomy lies! Ah! it findeth out the rich hearts which willingly 
lavish themselves! 

Yea, it findeth you out too, ye conquerors of the old God! 
Weary ye became of the conflict, and now your weariness 
serveth the new idol! 

Heroes and honourable ones, it would fain set up around it, 
the new idol! Gladly it basketh in the sunshine of good con- 
sciences, — ^the cold monster! 

Everything will it give you, if ye worship it, the new idol: 
thus it purchased! the lustre of your virtue, and the glance of 
your proud eyes. 

It seeketh to allure by means of you, the many-too-many! 
Yea, a hellish artifice hath here been devised, a death-horse 
jingling with the trappings of divine honours! 

Yea, a dying for many hath here been devised, which 
glorifieth itself as life: verily, a hearty service unto all preachers 
of death! 

The state, I call it, where all are poison-drinkers, the good 



and the bad: the state, where all lose themselves, the good and 
the bad: the state, where the slow suicide of all — ^is called 

Just see these superfluous ones! They steal the works of the 
inventors and the treasures of the wise. Culture, they call their 
theft — ^and everything becometh sickness and trouble unto 

Just see these superfluous ones! Sick are they always; they 
vomit their bile and call it a newspaper. They devour one an- 
other, and cannot even digest themselves. 

Just see these superfluous ones! Wealth they acquire and 
become poorer thereby. Power they seek for, and above all, the 
lever of power, much money — these impotent ones! 

See them clamber, these nimble apes! They damber over one 
another, and thus scuffle into the mud and the abyss. 

Towards the throne they all sixive: it is their madness — as if 
happiness sat on the throne! Ofttimes sitteth filth on the throne. 
— ^and ofttimes also the throne on filth. 

Madmen they all seem to me, and dambering apes, and too 
eager. Badly smelleth their idol to me, the cold monster: badly 
they all smell to me, these idolaters. 

My brethren, will ye suflFocate in the fumes of their maws 
and appetites! Better break the windows and jump into the 
open air! 

Do go out of the way of the bad odour! Withdraw from the 
idolatry of the superfluous! 

Do go out of the way of the bad odour! Withdraw from 
the steam of these human sacrifices! 

Open still remaineth the earth for great souls. Empty are 
still many sites for lone ones and twain ones, around which 
floateth the odour of tranquil seas. 

Open still remaineth a free life for great souls. Verily, he 


who possessetii little is so much the less possessed: blessed be 
moderate poverty! 

There, where the state ceaseth — there only commenceth the 
man who is not superfluous: there commenceth the song of the 
necessary ones, the single and irreplaceable melody. 

There, where the state ceaseth — ^pray look thither, my 
brethren! Do ye not see it, the rainbow and the bridges of the 
Superman? — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

12, The Flies in the Market-Place 

Flee, my friend, into thy solitude! I see thee deafened with 
the noise of the great men, and stung all over with the stings 
of the little ones. 

Admirably do forest and rock know how to be silent with 
thee. Resemble again the tree which thou lovest, the broad- 
branched one — ^silently and attentively it o’erhangeth the sea. 

Where solitude endeth, there beginneth the market-place; 
and where the market-place beginneth, there beginneth also 
the noise of the great actors, and the buzzing of the poison-flies. 

In the world even the best things are worthless without those 
who represent them: those representers, the people call great 

Little do the people understand what is great — ^that is to 
say, the creating agency. But they have a taste for all repre- 
senters and actors of great things. 


Around the devisers of new values revolveth the world: — 
invisibly it revolveth. But around the actors revolve the people 
and the glory: such is the course of things. 

Spirit, hath the actor, but little conscience of the spirit. He 
believeth always in that wherewith he maketh believe most 
strongly — in himself! 

Tomorrow he hath a new belief, and the day after, one still 
newer- Sharp perceptions hath he, like the people, and change- 
able humours. 

To upset — ^that meaneth with him to prove. To drive mad — 
that meaneth with him to convince. And blood is counted by 
him as the best of all arguments. 

A truth which only glideth into fine ears, he calleth false- 
hood and trumpery. Verily, he believeth only in gods that 
make a great noise in the world! 

Full of clattering buffoons is the market-place, — ^and the 
people glory in their great men! These are for them the masters 
of the hour. 

But the hour presseth them; so they press thee. And also 
from thee they want Yea or Nay. Alas! thou wouldst set thy 
chair betwixt For and Against? 

On account of those absolute and impatient ones, be not 
jealous, thou lover of truth! Never yet did truth ding to the 
arm of an absolute one. 

On account of those abrupt ones, return into thy security: 
only in the market-place is one assailed by Yea? or Nay? 

Slow is the experience of all deep fountains: long have they 
to wait until they know what hath fallen into their depths. 

Away from the market-place and from fame taketh place all 
that is great: away from the market-place and from fame have 
ever dwelt the devisers of new values. 



Flee, my friend, into thy* solitude: I see thee stung all over 
by the poisonous flies. Flee thither, where a rough, strong 
breeze bloweth! 

Flee into thy solitude! Thou hast lived too closely to the 
small and the pitiable. Flee from, their invisible vengeance! 
Towards thee they have nothing but vengeance. 

Raise no longer an arm against them! Innumerable are they, 
and it is not thy lot to be a fly-flap. 

Innumerable are the small and pitiable ones; and of many a 
proud structure, rain-drops and weeds have been the ruin. 

Thou art not stone; but already hast thou become hollow 
by the numerous drops. Thou wilt yet break and burst by the 
numerous drops. 

Exhausted I see thee, by poisonous flies; bleeding I see 
thee, and tom at a hundred spots; and thy pride will not even 

Blood they would have from thee in all innocence; blood 
their bloodless souls crave for — ^and they sting, therefore, in 
all innocence. 

But thou, profound one, thou sufferest too profoundly even 
from small wounds; and ere thou hadst recovered, the same 
poison-worm crawled over thy hand. 

Too proud art thou to kill these sweet-tooths. But take care 
lest it be thy fate to suffer all their poisonous injustice! 

They buzz around thee also with their praise: obtmsiveness 
is their praise. They want to be dose to thy skin and thy blood. 

They flatter thee, as one flattereth a God or devil; they 
whimper before thee, as before a God or devil. What doth it 
come to! Flatterers are they, and whimperers, and nothing 

Often, also, do they show themselves to thee as amiable ones. 



But that hath ever been the prudence of the cowardly. Yea! 
the cowardly are wise! 

They think much about thee with their circumscribed souls 
— ^thou art always suspected by them! Whatever is much 
thought about is at last thought suspicious. 

They punish thee for all thy virtues. They pardon thee in 
their inmost hearts only — ^for thine errors. 

Because thou art gentle and of upright character, thou 
sayest: '^Blameless are they for their small existence.’’ But their 
circumscribed souls think: **Blamable is all great existence.” 

Even when thou art gentle towards them, they still feel 
themselves despised by thee; and they repay thy beneficence 
with secret maleficence. 

Thy silent pride is always counter to their taste; they rejoice 
if once thou be humble enougjh to be frivolous. 

What we recognise in a man, we also irritate in him. There- 
fore be on your guard against the small ones! 

In thy presence they feel themselves small, and their base- 
ness gleameth and gloweth against thee in invisible vengeance. 

Sawest thou not how often they became dumb when thou 
approachedst them, and how their energy left them like the 
smoke of an extinguishing fire? 

Yea, my friend, the bad conscience art thou of thy neigh- 
bours; for they are unworthy of thee. Therefore they hate thee, 
and would fain suck thy blood. 

Thy neighbours will always be poisonous flies; what is great 
in thee — that itself must make them more poisonous, and 
always more fly-like. 

Flee, my friend, into thy solitude — ^and thither, where a 
rough strong breeze bloweth. It is not thy lot to be a fly-flap. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



jj. Chastity 

I LOVE the forest. It is bad to live in cities: there, there are too 
many of the lustful. 

Is it not better to fall into the hands of a murderer than 
into the dreams of a lustful woman? 

And just look at these men: their eye saith it — ^they know 
nothing better on earth than to lie with a woman. 

Filth is at the bottom of their souls; and alas! if their filth 
hath still spirit in it! 

Would that ye were perfect — at least as animals! But to 
animals belongeth innocence. 

Do I counsel you to slay your instincts? I counsel you to 
innocence in your instincts. 

Do I counsel you to chastity? Chastity is a virtue with some, 
but with many almost a vice. 

These are continent, to be sure: but doggish lust looketh 
enviously out of all that they do. 

Even into the heights of their virtue and into their cold spirit 
doth this creature follow them, with its discord. 

And how nicely can doggish lust beg for a piece of spirit, 
when a piece of flesh is denied it! 

Ye love tragedies and all that breaketh the heart? But I am 
distrustful of your doggish lust. 

Ye have too cruel eyes, and ye look wantonly towards the 
sufferers. Hath not your lust just disguised itself and taken the 
name of fellow-suffering? 

And also this parable give I unto you: Not a few who meant 
to cast out their devil, went thereby into the swine themselves. 



To whom chastity is difficult, it is to be dissuaded: lest it be- 
come the road to hell — ^to filth and lust of soul. 

Do I speak of filthy things.^ That is not the worst thing for 
me to do. 

Not when the truth is filthy, but when it is shallow, doth the 
discerning one go unwillingly into its waters. 

Verily, there are chaste ones from their very nature; they 
are gentler of heart, and laugh better and oftener than you. 

They laugh also at chastity, and ask: '‘What is chastity? 

Is chastity not folly? But the folly came unto us, and not we 
unto it. 

We offered that guest harbour and heart: now it dwelleth 
with us — ^let it stay as long as it will!” — 

Thus spake Zarathustra, 

14. The Friend 

''One is always too many about me * — ^thinketh the anchorite. 
"Always once one — ^that maketh two in the long run!" 

I and me are always too earnestly in conversation: how 
could it be endured, if there were not a friend? 

The friend of the anchorite is always the third one: the 
third one is the cork which preventeth the conversation of the 
two sinking into the depth. 

Ah! there are too many depths for all anchorites. Therefore, 
do they long so much for a friend and for his elevation. 

Our faith in others betrayeth wherein we would fain have 
faith in ourselves. Our longing for a friend is our betrayer. 



And often "with our love we want merely to overleap envy. 
And often we attack and make ourselves enemies, to conceal 
that we are vulnerable. 

"Be at least mine enemy!” — ^thus speaketh the true rever- 
ence, which doth not venture to solicit friendship. 

If one would have a friend, then must one also be willing 
to wage war for him: and in order to wage war, one must be 
capable of being an enemy. 

One ought still to honour the enemy in one’s friend. Canst 
thou go nigh unto thy friend, and not go over to him? 

In one’s friend one shall have one’s best enemy. Thou shalt 
be closest unto him with thy heart when thou withstandest him. 

Thou wouldst wear no raiment before thy friend? It is in 
honour of thy friend that thou showest thyself to hiTti as thou 
art? But he wisheth thee to the devil on that account! 

He who maketh no secret of himself shodceth: so mudi 
reason have ye to fear nakedness! Aye, if ye were gods, ye 
could then be ashamed of clothing! 

Thou canst not adorn thyself fine enough for thy friend; 
for thou shalt be unto him an arrow and a longing for the 

Sawest thou ever thy friend asleep — ^to know how he 
looketh? What is usually the countenance of thy friend? It is 
thine own coimtenance, in a coarse and imperfect mirror. 

Sawest thou ever thy friend asle^? Wert thou not dis- 
mayed at thy friend looking so? O my friend, man is some- 
thing that hath to be surpassed. 

In divining and keeping silence shall the friend be a master: 
not everything must thou wish to see. "rhy dream shall dis- 
dose unto thee what thy friend doeth when awake. 

Let thy pity be a divining: to know first if thy friend 



wanteth pity. Perhaps he loveth in thee the unmoved eye, and 
the look of eternity. 

Let thy pity for thy friend be hid under a hard shell; thou 
shalt bite out a tooth upon it. Thus will it have delicacy and 

Art thou pure air and solitude and bread and medicine to 
thy friend? Many a one cannot loosen his own fetters, but is 
nevertheless his friend's emancipator. 

Art thou a slave? Then thou canst not be a friend. Art thou 
a tyrant? Then thou canst not have friends. 

Far too long hath there been a slave and a tyrant concealed 
in woman. On that account woman is not yet capable of friend- 
ship: she knoweth only love. 

In woman's love there is injustice and blindness to all she 
doth not love. And even in woman s conscious love, there is 
still always surprise and lightning and night, along with the 

As yet woman is not capable of friendship: women are still 
cats and birds. Or at the best, cows. 

As yet woman is not capable of friendship. But tell me, ye 
men, who of you is capable of friendship? 

Oh! your poverty, ye men, and your sordidness of soul! As 
much as ye give to your friend, will I give even to my foe, and 
will nc^ have become poorer thereby. 

There is comradeship: may there be friendship! 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



jj. The Thousand and One Goals 

Many lands saw Zarathustra, and many peoples: thus he dis- 
covered the good and bad of many peoples. No greater power 
did Zaradiustra find on earth than good and bad. 

No people could live without first valuing; if a people will 
maintain itself, however, it must not value as its neighbour 

Much that passed for good with one people was regarded 
with scorn and contempt by another: thus I found it. Much 
found I here called bad, which was there decked with purple 

Never did the one neighbour understand the other: ever 
did his soul marvel at his neighbour's delusion and wickedness. 

A table of excellencies hangeth over every people. Lo! it is 
the table of their triumphs; lo! it is the voice of their Will to 

It is laudable, what they think hard; what is indispensable 
and hard they call good; and what relieveth in the direst dis- 
tress, the unique and hardest of all, — ^they extol as holy. 

Whatever maketh them rule and conquer and shine, to the 
dismay and envy of their neighbours, they regard as the high 
and foremost thing, the test and the meaning of all else. 

Verily, my brother, if thou knewest but a people’s need, its 
land, its sky, and its neighbour, then wouldst thou divine the 
law of its surmountings, and why it climbeth up that ladder to 
its hope. 

‘'Always shalt thou be the foremost and prominent above 
others: no one shall thy jealous soul love, except a friend” — 


that made the soul of a Greek thrill: thereby went he his way 
to greatness- 

*To speak truth, and be skilful with bow and arrow’' — ^so 
seemed it alike pleasing and hard to the people from whom 
cometh my name — ^the name which is alike pleasing and hard 
to me, 

'To honour father and mother, and from the root of the soul 
to do their will” — ^this table of surmounting hung another 
people over them, and became powerful and permanent there- 

'To have fidelity, and for the sake of fidelity to risk honour 
and blood, even in evil and dangerous courses” — ^teaching it- 
self so, another people mastered itself, and thus mastering 
itself, became pregnant and heavy with great hopes. 

Verily, men have given unto themselves all their good and 
bad. Verily, they took it not, they found it not, it came not unto 
them as a voice from heaven. 

Values did man only assign to things in order to maintain 
himself — ^he created only the significance of things, a human 
significance! Therefore, calleth he himself "man,” that is, the 

Valuing is creating: hear it, ye creating ones! Valuation 
itself is the treasure and jewel of the valued things. 

Through valuation only is there value; and without valua- 
tion the nut of existence would be hollow. Hear it, ye creating 

Qiange of values — that is, change of the creating ones. 
Always doth he destroy who hath to be a creator. 

Creating ones were first of all peoples, and only in late 
times individuals; verily, the individual himself is still the 
latest creation. 

Peoples once hung over them tables of the good. Love which 


would rule and love which would obey, created for themselves 
such tables. 

Older is the pleasure in the herd than the pleasure in the 
ego : and as long as the good conscience is for the herd, the bad 
conscience only saith: ego. 

Verily, the crafty ego, the loveless one, that seeketh its 
advantage in the advantage of many — ^it is not the origin of the 
herd, but its ruin. 

Loving ones, was it always, and creating ones, that created 
good and bad. Fire of love gloweth in the names of ail the 
virtues, and fire of wrath. 

Many lands saw Zarathustra, and many peoples: no greater 
power did Zarathustra find on earth than the creations of the 
loving ones — "good” and "bad” are they called. 

Verily, a prodigy is this power of praising and blaming. 
Tell me, ye brethren, who will master it for me? Who will put 
a fetter upon the thousand necks of this animal? 

A thousand goals have there been hitherto, for a thousand 
peoples have there been. Only the fetter for the thousand 
necks is still lacking; there is lacking the one goal. As yet 
humanity hath not a goal. 

But pray tell me, my brethren, if the goal of humanity be still 
lacking, is there not also still lacking — humanity itself? — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 




16. Neighbour-Love 

Ye crowd around your neighbour, and have fine words for it 
But I say unto you: your neighbour-love is your bad love of 

Ye flee unto your neighbour from yourselves, and would 
fain make a virtue thereof: but I fathom your '"unselfishness.” 

The Thou is older than the 1; the Thou hath been conse- 
crated, but not yet the 1: so man presseth nigh imto his neigh- 

Do I advise you to neighbour-love? Rather do I advise you 
to neighbour-flight and to furthest love! 

Higher than love to your neighbour is love to the furthest 
and future ones; higher still than love to men, is love to things 
and phantoms. 

The phantom that runneth on before fliee, my brother, is 
fairer than thou; why dost thou not give xmto it thy flesh and 
thy bones? But thou fearest, and runnest unto thy neighbour. 

Ye cannot endure it with yourselves, and do not love your- 
selves sufficiently: so ye seek to mislead your neighbour into 
love, and would fain gild yourselves with his error. 

Would that ye could not endure it with any kind of near 
ones, or their neighbours; then would ye have to create your 
friend and his overflowing heart out of yourselves. 

Ye call in a witness when ye want to speak well of your- 
selves; and when ye have misled him to think well of you, ye 
also think well of yourselves. 

Not only doth he lie, who speaketh contrary to his knowl- 
edge, but more so, he who speaketh contrary to his ignorance. 


And thus speak ye of yourselves in your intercourse, and belie 
your neighbour with yourselves. 

Thus saith the fool: "Association with men spoileth the 
character, especially when one hath none.” 

The one goeth to his neighbour because he seeketh him- 
self, and the other because he would fain lose himself. Your 
bad love to yourselves maketh solitude a prison to you. 

The furthest ones are they who pay for your love to the 
near ones; and when there are but five of you together, a sixth 
must always die. 

I love not your festivals either: too many actors found I 
there, and even the spectators often behaved like actors. 

Not the neighbour do I teach you, but the friend. Let the 
friend be the festival of the earth to you, and a foretaste of 
the Superman. 

I teach you the friend and his overflowing heart. But one 
must know how to be a sponge, if one would be loved by over- 
flowing hearts. 

I teach you the friend in whom the world standeth complete, 
a capsule of the good, — the creating friend, who hath always a 
complete world to bestow. 

And as the world unrolled itself for him, so rolletfa it to- 
gether again for him in rings, as the growth of good through 
evil, as the growth of purpose out of chance. 

Let the future and the furthest be the motive of thy today; 
in thy friend shalt thou love the Superman as thy motive. 

My brethren, I advise you not to neighbour-love — advise 
you to furthest love! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 


ly. The Way of the Creating One 

WoULDST thou go into isolation, my brother? Wouldst thou 
seek the way unto thyself? Tarry yet a little and hearken unto 

'*He who seeketh may easily get lost himself. All isolation 
is wrong” : so say the herd. And long didst thou belong to the 

The voice of the herd will still echo in thee. And when thou 
sayest, *1 have no longer a conscience in common with you,” 
then will it be a plaint and a pain. 

Lo, that pain itself did the same conscience produce; and 
the last gleam of that conscience still gloweth on thine ajBic- 

But thou wouldst go the way of thine affliction, which is the 
way unto thyself? Then show me thine authority and thy 
strength to do so! 

Art thou a new strength and a new authority? A first 
motion? A self-rolling wheel? Canst thou also compel stars 
to revolve around thee? 

Alas! there is so much lusting for loftiness! There are so 
many convulsions of the ambitions! Show me that thou art not 
a lusting and ambitious one! 

Alas! there are so many great thoughts that do nothing more 
than the bellows: they inflate, and make emptier than ever. 

Free, dost thou call thyself? Thy ruling thought would I 
hear of, and not that thou hast escaped from a yoke. 

Art thou one entitled to escape from a yoke? Many a one 
hath cast away his final worth when he hath cast away his 


Free from what? What doth that matter to Zarathustra! 
Clearly, however, shall thine eye show unto me: free for what? 

Canst thou give unto thyself thy bad and thy good, and set 
up thy will as a law over thee? Canst thou be judge for thyself, 
and avenger of thy law? 

Terrible is aloneness with the judge and avenger of one’s 
own law. Thus is a star projected into desert space, and into the 
icy breath of aloneness. 

To-day sufferest thou still from the multitude, thou individ- 
ual; to-day hast thou still thy courage unabated, and thy hopes. 

But one day will the solitude weary thee; one day will thy 
pride yield, and thy courage quail. Thou wilt one day cry: "I 
am alone!” 

One day wilt thou see no longer thy loftiness, and see too 
closely thy lowliness; thy sublimity itself will frighten thee as 
a phantom. Thou wilt one day cry; ”A11 is false!” 

There are feelings which seek to slay the lonesome one; if 
they do not succeed, then must they themselves die! But art 
thou capable of it — ^to be a murderer? 

Hast thou ever known, my brother, the word "disdain”? 
And the anguish of thy justice in being just to those that dis- 
dain thee? 

Thou forcest many to think differently about thee; that, 
charge they heavily to thine account. Thou earnest nigh unto 
them, and yet wentest past; for that they never forgive thee. 

Thou goest beyond them: but the higher thou risest, the 
smaller doth the eye of envy see thee. Most of all, however, is 
the flying one hated. 

"How could ye be just unto me!” — ^must thou say — "I 
choose your injustice as my allotted portion.” 

Injustice and filth cast they at the lonesome one: but, my 


brother, if thou wouldst be a star, thou must shine for them 
none the less on that account! 

And be on thy guard against the good and just! Th^ would 
fain crucify those who devise their own virtue — ^they hate the 
lonesome ones, 

Be on thy guard, also, against holy simplicity! All is unholy 
to it that is not simple; fain, likewise, would it play with the 
— of the fagot and stake. 

And be on thy guard, also, against the assaults of thy love! 
Too readily doth the recluse reach his hand to any one who 
meeteth him. 

To many a one mayest thou not give thy hand, but only thy 
paw; and I wish thy paw also to have daws. 

But the worst enemy thou canst meet, wilt thou thyself 
always be; thou waylayest thyself in caverns and forests. 

Thou lonesome one, thou goest the way to thyself! And 
past thyself and thy seven devils leadeth thy way! 

A heretic wilt thou be to thyself, and a wizard and a sooth- 
sayer, and a fool, and a doubter, and a reprobate, and a villain. 

Ready must thou be to burn thyself in thine own flame; how 
couldst thou become new if thou have not first become ashes! 

Thou lonesome one, thou goest the way of the creating one: 
a God wilt thou create for thysdf out of thy seven devils! 

Thou lonesome one, thou goest the way of the loving one: 
thou lovest thyself, and on that account despisest thou thyself, 
as only the loving ones despise. 

To create, desireth the loving one, because he despiseth! 
What knoweth he of love who hath not been obliged to despise 
just what he loved! 

With thy love, go into thine isolaticm, my brother, and with 
thy creating; and late only will justice limp after thee. 



With my tears, go into thine isolation, my brother. I love 
him who seeketh to create beyond himself, and thus suc- 
cumbeth. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

i8. Old and Toung Women 

Why stealest thou along so furtively in the twilight, Zara- 
thustra? And what hidest thou so carefully under thy mantle? 

Is it a treasure that hath been given thee? Or a child that 
hath been bom thee? Or goest thou thyself on a thief’s errand, 
thou friend of the evil? — 

Verily, my brother, said Zarathustra, it is a treasure that 
hath been given me: it is a little truth which I carry. 

But it is naughty, like a young child; and if I hold not its 
mouth, it screameth too loudly. 

As I went on my way alone today, at the hour when the 
sun declineth, there met me an old woman, and she spake thus 
unto my soul: 

'*Much hath Zarathustra spoken also to us women, but 
never spake he unto us concerning woman.” 

And I answered her: ''Concerning woman, one should only 
talk unto men.” 

"Talk also unto me of woman,” said she; "I am old enough 
to forget it presently.” 

And I obliged the old woman and spake thus imto her; 

Everything in woman is a riddle, and everjihing in woman 
hath one solution — ^it is called pregnancy. 


Man is for woman a means: the purpose is always the child. 
But what is woman for man? 

Two different things wanteth the true man: danger and 
diversion. Therefore wanteth he woman, as the most danger- 
ous plaything. 

Man shall be trained for war, and woman for the recreation 
of the warrior; all else is folly. 

Too sweet fruits — ^these the warrior liketh not. Therefore 
liketh he woman; — bitter is even the sweetest woman. 

Better than man doth woman understand children, but man 
is more childish than woman. 

In the true man there is a child hidden: it wanteth to play. 
Up then, ye women, and discover the child in man! 

A plaything let woman be, pure and fine like the precious 
stone, illumined with the virtues of a world not yet come. 

Let the beam of a star shine in your love! Let your hope say: 
''May I bear the Superman!’’ 

In your love let there be valour! With your love shall ye 
assail him who inspireth you with fear! 

In your love be your honour! Little doth woman understand 
otherwise about honour. But let this be your honour: always 
to love more than ye are loved, and never be the second. 

Let man fear woman when she loveth: then maketh she 
every sacrifice, and everything else she regardeth as worthless. 

Let man fear woman when she hateth: for man in his inner- 
most soul is merely evil; woman, however, is mean. 

Whom hateth woman most? — ^Thus spake the iron to the 
loadstone: "I hate thee most, because thou attractest, but art 
too weak to draw unto thee.” 

The happiness of man is, *T will.” The happiness of woman 
is, "He will.” 


'Xo! now hath the world become perfect!” — ^thus thinketh 
every woman when she obeyeth with all her love. 

Obey, must the woman, and find a depth for her surface. 
Surface is woman’s soul, a mobile, stormy film on shallow 

Man’s soul, however, is deep, its current gusheth in subter- 
ranean caverns: woman sizrmiseth its force, but comprehendetfa 
it not. — 

Then answered me the old woman: *'Many fine things hath 
Zarathustra said, especially for those who are young enough 
for them. 

Strange! Zarathustra knoweth little about woman, and yet 
he is right about them! Doth this happen, because with women 
nothing is impossible? 

And now accept a little truth by way of thanks! I am old 
enough for it! 

Swaddle it up and hold its mouth: otherwise it will scream 
too loudly, the little truth.” 

"Give me, woman, thy little truth!” said I. And thus spake 
the old woman: 

"Thou goest to women? Do not forget thy whip!” — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

The Bite of the Adder 

One day had Zarathustra fallen asleq? under a fig-tree, owing 
to the heat, with his arm over his face. And there came an 
adder and bit him in the neck, so that Zarathustra saeamed 
widi pain. When he had taken his atm from his face he looked 



at the serpent; and then did it recognise the eyes of Zarathustra, 
wriggled awkwardly, and tried to get away. *'Not at all/' said 
Zarathustra, *'as yet hast thou not received my thanks! Thou 
hast awakened me in time; my journey is yet long." ”Thy 
journey is short," said the adder sadly; '*my poison is fatal." 
Zarathustra smiled. '*When did ever a dragon die of a serpent's 
poison.^" — ^said he. "But take thy poison back! Thou art not 
rich enough to present it to me." Then fell the adder again on 
his neck, and licked his wound. 

When Zarathustra once told this to his disciples they asked 
him: "And what, O Zarathustra, is the moral of thy story.^" 
And Zarathustra answered them thus : 

The destroyer of morality, the good and just call me: my 
story is immoral. 

When, however, ye have an enemy, then return him not 
good for evil: for that would abash him. But prove that he 
hath done something good to you. 

And rather be angry than abash any one! And when ye are 
cursed, it pleaseth me not that ye should then desire to bless. 
Rather curse a little also! 

And should a great injustice befall you, then do qizickly five 
small ones besides. Hideous to behold is he on whom injustice 
presseth alone. 

Did ye ever know this? Shared injustice is half justice. And 
he who can bear it, shall take the injustice upon himself! 

A small revenge is humaner than no revenge at all. And if 
the punishment be not also a right and an honour to the trans- 
gressor, I do not like your punishing. 

Nobler is it to own oneself in the wrong than to establish 
one’s right, especially if one be in the right. Only, one must be 
rich enough to do so. 

I do not like your cold justice; out of the eye of your judges 


there always glanceth the executioner and his cold steel. 

Tell me: where find we justice, which is love with seeing 

Devise me, then, the love which not only beareth all punish- 
ment, but also all guilt! 

Devise me, then, the justice which acquitteth every one 
except the judge! 

And would ye hear this likewise? To him who seeketh to be 
just from the heart, even the lie becometh philanthropy. 

But how could I be just from the heart! How can I give every 
one his own! Let this be enough for me: I give unto every one 
mine own. 

Finally, my brethren, guard against doing wrong to any 
anchorite. How could an anchorite forget! How could he 

Like a deep well is an anchorite. Easy is it to throw in a 
stone: if it should sink to the bottom, however, tell me, who 
will bring it out again? 

Guard against injuring the anchorite! If ye have done so, 
however, well then, kill him also! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

20. Child and Marriage 

I HAVE a question for thee alone, my brother: like a sounding- 
lead, cast I this question into thy soul, that I may know its 

Thou art young, and desirest child and marriage. But I ask 
thee: Art thou a man entitled to desire a child? 


Art thou the victorious one, the self conqueror, the ruler of 
thy passions, the master of thy virtues? Thus do I ask thee. 

Or doth the animal speak in thy wish, and necessity? Or iso- 
lation? Or discord in thee? 

I would have thy victory and freedom long for a child. 
Living monuments shalt thou build to thy victory and emanci- 

Beyond thyself shalt thou build. But first of all must thou 
be built thyself, rectangular in body and soul. 

Not only onward shalt thou propagate thyself, but upward! 
For that purpose may the garden of marriage help thee! 

A higher body shalt thou create, a first movement, a spon- 
taneously rolling wheel — a. creating one shalt thou create. 

Marriage: so call I the will of the twain to create the one that 
is more than those who created it. The reverence for one an- 
other, as those exercising such a will, call I marriage. 

Let this be the significance and the truth of thy marriage. 
But that which the many-too-many call marriage, those super- 
fluous ones — ^ah, what shall I call it? 

Ah, the poverty of soul in the twain! Ah, the filth of soul in 
the twain! Ah, the pitiable self-complacency in the twain! 

Marriage they call it all; and they say their marriages are 
made in heaven. 

Well, I do not like it, that heaven of the superfluous! No, I 
do not like them, those animals tangled in the heavenly toils! 

Far from me also be the God who limpeth thither to bless 
what he hath not matched! 

Laugh not at such marriages! What child hath not had reason 
to weep over its parents? 

Worthy did this man seem, and ripe for the meaning of the 
earth: but when I saw his wife, the earth seemed to me a home 
for madcaps. 


Yea, I would that the earth shook with convulsions when a 
saint and a goose mate with one another. 

This one went forth in quest of truth as a hero, and at last 
got for himself a small decked-up lie: his marriage he calleth it. 

That one was reserved in intercourse and chose choicely. But 
one time he spoilt his company for all time: his marriage he 
calleth it. 

Another sought a handmaid with the virtues of an angel. 
But all at once he became the handmaid of a woman, and now 
would he need also to become an angel. 

Careful, have I found all buyers, and all of them have astute 
eyes. But even the astutest of them buyeth his wife in a sack. 

Many short follies — thst is called love by you. And your 
marriage putteth an end to many short follies, with one long 

Your love to woman, and woman's love to man — ^ah, would 
that it were sympathy for suffering and veiled deities! But 
generally two animals alight on one another. 

But even your best love is only an enraptured simile and a 
painful ardour. It is a torch to light you to loftier paths. 

Beyond yourselves shall ye love some day! Then learn first 
of all to love. And on that account ye had to drink the bitter 
cup of your love. 

Bitterness is in the cup even of the best love; thus doth it 
cause longing for the Superman; thus doth it cause thirst in 
thee, the creating one! 

Thirst in the creating one, arrow and longing for the Super- 
man: tell me, my brother, is this thy will to marriage? 

Holy call I such a will, and such a marriage. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



21. Voluntary Death 

Many die too late, and some die too early. Yet strange 
soundeth the precept: "Die at the right time!” 

Die at the right time: so teacheth Zarathustra, 

To be sure, he who never liveth at the right time, how could 
he ever die at the right time? Would that he might never be 
bom! — ^Thus do I advise the superfluous ones. 

But even flie superfluous ones make much ado about their 
death, and even the hollowest nut wanteth to be cradced. 

Every one regardeth dying as a great matter: but as yet death 
is not a festival. Not yet have people learned to inaugurate the 
finest festivals. 

The consummating death I show unto you, which becometh 
a stimulus and promise to the living. 

His death, dieth the consummating one trimnphantly, sur- 
rounded by hoping and promising ones. 

Thus should one leam to die; and there should be no festival 
at which such a dying one doth not consecrate the oaths of the 

Thus to die is best; the next best, however, is to die in battle, 
and sacrifice a great soul. 

But to the fighter equally hateful as to the victor, is your 
grinning death which stealeth nigh like a thief, — ^and yet 
cometh as master. 

My death, praise I unto you, the voluntary death, which 
cometh unto me because I want it 

And when shall I want it? — ^He that hath a goal and an heir, 
wanteth death at the right time for the gcxil and the heir. 



And out of reverence for the goal and the heir, he will hang 
up no more withered wreaths in the sanctuary of life. 

Verily, not the rope-makers will I resemble: they lengthen 
out their cord, and therdsy go ever backward. 

Many a one, also, waxeth too old for his truths and 
triumphs; a toothless mouth hath no longer the right to every 

And whoever wanteth to have fame, must take leave of 
honour betimes, and practise the difficult art of — agoing at the 
right time. 

One must discontinue being feasted upon when one tasteth 
best : that is known by those who want to be long loved. 

Sour apples are there, no doubt, whose lot is to wait until 
the last day of autumn: and at the same time th^ become ripe, 
yellow, and shrivelled. 

In some ageth the heart hrst, and in others the spirit. And 
some are hoary in youth, but the late young keq? long young. 

To many men life is a failure; a poison-worm gnaweth at 
their heart. Then let them see to it that their dying is all the 
more a success. 

Many never become sweet; thqr rot even in the summer. It is 
cowardice that holdedx them fast to iheir branches. 

Far too many live, and far too long hang they on their 
branches. Would that a storm came and shook all this rotten- 
ness and worm-eatenness from the tree! 

Would diat there came preachers of spgedjf rtpuf-hf Those 
would be the appropriate storms and agitators of the trees of 
life! But I hear cwnly slow death preached, and patience with all 
that is "earthly.” 

Ah! ye preadi patience with what is earthly? This earthly is 
it that hath too much patience with you, ye blasphemers! 


Verily, too early died that Hebrew whom the preachers of 
slow death honour: and to many hath it proved a calamity that 
he died too early. 

As yet had he known only tears, and the melancholy of the 
Hebrews, together with the hatred of the good and just 
— ^the Hebrew Jesus; then was he seized with the longing for 

Had he but remained in the wilderness, and far from the 
good and just! Then, perhaps, would he have learned to live, 
and love the earth — ^and laughter also! 

Believe it, my brethren! He died too early; he himself would 
have disavowed his doctrine had he attained to my age! Noble 
enough was he to disavow! 

But he was still immature. Immaturely loveth the youth, and 
immaturely also hateth he man and earth. Confined and awk- 
ward are still his soul and the wings of his spirit. 

But in man there is more of the child than in the youth, and 
less of melancholy: better imderstandeth he about life and 

Free for death, and free in death; a holy Naysayer, when 
there is no longer time for Yea: thus understandeth he about 
death and life. 

That your dying may not be a reproach to man and the 
earth, my friends: that do I solicit from the honey of your 

In your dying shall your spirit and your virtue still shine like 
an evening after-glow around the earth; otherwise your dying 
hath been unsatisfactory. 

Thus will I die myself, that ye friends may love the earth 
more for my sake; and earth will I again become, to have rest 
in her that bore me. 


Verily, a goal had Zarathustra; he threw his ball. Now be ye 
friends the heirs of my goal; to you throw I the golden ball. 

Best of all, do I see you, my friends, throw the golden ball! 
And so tarry I still a litde while on the earth — pardon me for it! 

Thus spalce Zarathustra. 

22, The Bestowing Virtue 


When Zarathustra had taken leave of the town to which his 
heart was attached, the name of which is ''The Pied Cow,” 
there followed him many people who called themselves his 
disciples, and kept him company. Thus came they to a cross- 
roads. Then Zarathustra told them that he now wanted to go 
alone; for he was fond of going alone. His disciples, however, 
presented him at his departure with a staJff, on the golden 
handle of which a serpent twined round the sun. Zarathustra 
rejoiced on account of the staff, and supported himself thereon; 
then spake he thus to his disciples: 

Tell me, pray; how came gold to the highest value? Because 
it is uncommon, and unprofiting, and beaming, and soft in 
lustre; it always bestoweth itself. 

Only as image of the highest virtue came gold to the highest 
value. GoldUke, beameth the glance of the bestower. Gold- 
lustre maketh peace between moon and sun. 

Uncommon is the highest virtue, and unprofiting, beaming 
is it, and soft of lustre; a bestowing virtue is the highest virtue. 



Verily, I divine you well, my disciples: ye strive like me for 
tiie bestowing virtue. What should ye have in common with 
cats and wolves? 

It is your thirst to become sacrifices and gifts yourselves: and 
therefore have ye the thirst to accumulate all riches in your soul. 

Insatiably striveth your soul for treasures and jewels, be- 
cause your virtue is insatiable in desiring to bestow. 

Ye constrain all things to flow towards /ou and into you, 
so that they shall flow back again out of your fountain as the 
gifts of your love. 

Verily, an appropriator of all values must such bestowing 
love become; but healthy and holy, call I this selfishness. — 

Another selfishness is there, an all-too-poor and hungry 
kind, which would always steal — ^the selfishness of the sick, 
the sickly selfishness. 

With the eye of the thief it looketh upon all that is lustrous; 
with the craving of hunger it measureth him who hath abun- 
dance; and ever doth it prowl round the tables of bestowers. 

Sickness speaketh in such craving, and invisible degenera- 
tion; of a sidJy body, speaketh the larcenous craving of this 

TeU me, my brother, what do we think bad, and worst of 
all? Is it not degeneration ? — ^And we always suspect degenera- 
tion when the bestowing soul is lacking. 

Upward goeth our course from genera on to super-genera. 
But a horror to us is the degenerating sense, which saith: ''All 
for myself.’’ 

Upward soareth our sense: thus is it a simile of our body, a 
simile of an elevation. Such similes of elevations are the names 
of the virtues. 

Thus goeth the body through history, a becomer and fighter. 



And the spirit — ^what is it to the body? Its fights’ and victories’ 
herald, its companion and echo. 

Similes, are all names of good and evil; they do not speak 
out, they only hint. A fool who seeketh knowledge from them! 

Give heed, my brethren, to every hour when your spirit 
would speak in similes: there is the origin of your virtue. 

Elevated is then your body, and raised up; with its delight, 
enraptureth it the spirit; so that it becometh creator, and 
valuer, and lover, and everything’s benefactor. 

When your heart overflowed! broad and full like the river, 
a blessing and a danger to the lowlanders: there is the origin 
of your virtue. 

When ye are exalted above praise and blame, and your will 
would command all things, as a loving one’s will: there is the 
origin of your virtue. 

When ye despise pleasant things, and the effeminate couch, 
and cannot couch far enough from the effeminate; there is the 
origin of your virtue. 

When ye are willers of one will, and when that change of 
every need is needful to you: there is the origin of your virtue. 

Verily, a new good and evil is it! Verily, a new deep mur- 
muring, and the voice of a new fountain! 

Power is it, this new virtue; a ruling thought is it, and 
around it a subtle soul: a golden sun, with the serpent of 
knowledge around it. 

Here paused Zarathustra awhile, and looked lovingly on 
his disciples. Then he continued to speak thus — ^and his voice 
had changed: 


Remain true to the earth, my brethren, with the power of 
your virtue! Let your bestowing love and your knowledge be 
devoted to be the meaning of the earth! Thus do I pray and 
conjure you. 

Let it not fly away from the earthly and beat against eternal 
walls with its wings! Ah, there hath always been so much 
flown-away virtue! 

Lead, like me, the flown-away virtue back to the earth — ^yea, 
back to body and life: that it may give to the earth its mean- 
ing, a human meaning! 

A hundred times hitherto hath spirit as well as virtue flown 
away and blundered. Alas! in our body dwelleth still all this 
delusion and blundering: body and will hath it there become, 

A hundred times hitherto hath spirit as well as virtue at- 
tempted and erred. Yea, an attempt hath man been. Alas, 
mudi ignorance and error hath become embodied in us! 

Not only the rationality of millennia — ^also their mad- 
ness, breaketh out in us. Dangerous is it to be an heir. 

Still fight we step by step with the giant Chance, and over 
all mankind hath hitherto ruled nonsense, the lack-of -sense. 

Let your spirit and your virtue be devoted to the sense of the 
earth, my brethren: let the value of everything be determined 
anew by you! Therefore shall ye be fighters! Therefore shall 
ye be creators! 

Intelligently doth the body purify itself; attempting with 
intelligence it exalteth itself; to the discemers all impulses 
sanctify themselves; to the exalted the soul becometh joyful. 

Physician, heal thyself : then wilt thou also heal thy patient. 
Let it be his best cure to see with his eyes him who maketh 
himself whole. 

A thousand paths are there which have never yet been 
trodden; a thousand salubrities and hidden islands of life. 


Unexhausted and undiscovered is still man and man’s world. 

Awake and hearken, ye lonesome ones! From the future 
come winds with stealthy pinions, and to fine ears good tidings 
are proclaimed. 

Ye lonesome ones of today, ye seceding ones, ye shall one 
day be a people: out of you who have chosen yourselves, shall 
a chosen people arise: — ^and out of it the Superman. 

Verily, a place of healing shall the earth become! And 
already is a new odour diffused around it, a salvation-bringing 
odour — ^and a new hope! 


When Zarathustra had spoken these words, he paused, like 
one who had not said his last word; and long did he balance 
the staff doubtfully in his hand. At last he spake thus — ^and his 
voice had changed: 

I now go alone, my disciples! Ye also now go away, and 
alone! So will I have it. 

Verily, I advise you: depart from me, and guard yourselves 
against Zarathustra! And better stiU: be ashamed of him! Per- 
haps he hath deceived you. 

The man of knowledge must be able not only to love his 
enemies, but also to hate his friends. 

One requiteth a teacher badly if one remain merely a 
scholar. And why will ye not pluck at my wreath? 

Ye venerate me; but what if your veneration should some 
day collapse? Take heed lest a statue crush you! 

Ye say, ye believe in Zarathustra? But of what account is 
Zarathustra! Ye are my believers: but of what account are all 


Ye had not yet sought yourselves: then did ye find me. So do 
all believers; therefore all belief is of so little account. 

Now do I bid you lose me and find yourselves; and only 
when ye have all denied me, will I return unto you. 

Verily, with other eyes, my brethren, shall I then seek my 
lost ones; with another love shall I then love you. 

And once again shall ye have become friends unto me, and 
children of onehope: then will I be with you for the third time, 
to celebrate the great noontide with you. 

And it is the great noontide, when man is in the middle of 
his course between animal and Superman, and celebrateth his 
advance to the evening as his highest hope: for it is the ad- 
vance to a new morning. 

At such time will the down-goer bless himself, that he 
should be an over-goer; and the sun of his knowledge will be 
at noontide. 

"Dead are dl the Gods; now do we desire the Superman 
to live ,’’ — ^Let this be our final will at the great noontide! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 




** — and only when ye have all denied 
me, will I return unto you. 

Verily, with other eyes, my brethren, 
shall I then seek my lost ones; with 
another love shall I then love you.** — 
Zarathustra, L, ’’The Bestowing 
Virtue” (p. 92). 


2^, The Child with the Mirror 

After this Zarathustra returned again into the mountains to 
the solitude of his cave, and withdrew himself from men, 
waiting like a sower who hath scattered his seed. His soul, 
however, became impatient and full of longing for those 
whom he loved: because he had still much to give them. For 
this is hardest of all: to close the open hand out of love, and 
keep modest as a giver. 

Thus passed with the lonesome one months and years; his 
wisdom meanwhile inaeased, and caused him pain by its 

One morning, however, he awoke ere the rosy dawn, and 
having meditated long on his couch, at last spake thus to his 

Why did I startle in my dream, so that I awoke? Did not a 
child come to me, carrying a mirror? 

**0 Zarathustra” — ^said the child imto me — ^'look at thyself 
in the mirror!” 

But when I looked into the mirror, I shrieked, and my heart 
throbbed: for not myself did I see therein, but a deviFs 
grimace and derision. 

Verily, all too well do I understand the dream’s portent and 
monition: my doctrine is in danger; tares want to be called 

Mine enemies have grown powerful and have disfigured the 



likeness of my doctrine, so that my dearest ones have to blush 
for the gifts that I gave them. 

Lost are my friends; the hour hath come for me to seek my 
lost ones! — 

With these words Zarathustra started up, not however like 
a person in anguish seeking relief, but rather like a seer and a 
singer whom the spirit inspireth. With amazement did his 
eagle and serpent gaze upon him: for a coming bliss over- 
spread his countenance like the rosy dawn. 

What hath happened unto me, mine animals? — ^said Zara- 
thustra. Am I not transformed? Hath not bliss come imto me 
like a whirlwind? 

Foolish is my happiness, and foolish things will it speak: it 
is still too young — ^so have patience with it! 

Wounded am I by my happiness: all sufferers shall be 
physicians unto me! 

To my friends can I again go down, and also to mine 
enemies! Zarathustra can again speak and bestow, and show 
his best love to his loved ones! 

My impatient love overfloweth in streams, — down towards 
sunrise and sunset. Out of silent mountains and storms of 
afSiction, msheth my soul into the valleys. 

Too long have I longed and looked into the distance. Too 
long hath solitude possessed me: thus have I unlearned to keep 

Utterance have I become altogether, and the brawling of a 
brook from high rocks: downward into the valleys will I hurl 
my speech. 

And let the stream of my love sweep into xmfrequented 
channels! How should a stream not finally find its way to the 


Forsooth, there is a lake in me, sequestered and self -sufEcing; 
but the stream of my love beareth this along with it, down — ^to 
the sea! 

New paths do I tread, a new speech cometfa unto me; tired 
have I become — ^like all creators — of the old tongues. No 
longer will my spirit walk on worn-out soles. 

Too slowly runneth all speaking for me: — ^into thy chariot, 
O storm, do I leap! And even thee will I whip with my spite! 

Like a cry and an huzza will I traverse wide seas, till I find 
the Happy Isles where my friends sojourn; — 

And mine enemies amongst them! How I now love every 
one imto whom I may but speak! Even mine enemies pertain 
to my bliss. 

And when I want to mount my wildest horse, then doth my 
spear always help me up best: it is my foot s ever ready 
servant: — 

The spear which I hurl at mine enemies! How grateful am I 
to mine enemies that I may at last hurl it! 

Too great hath been the tension of my cloud: ’twixt laugh- 
ters of lightnings will I cast hail-showers into the depths. 

Violently will my breast then heave; violently will it blow 
its storm over the mountains: thus cometh its assuagement. 

Verily, like a storm cometh my happiness, and my freedom! 
But mine enemies shall think that evil one roareth over 
their heads. 

Yea, ye also, my friends, will be alarmed by my wild wis- 
dom; and perhaps ye will flee therefrom, along with mine 

Ah, that I knew how to lure you back with shepherds' 
flutes! Ah, that my lioness wisdom would learn to roar softly! 
And much have we already learned with one another! 

My wild wisdom became pregnant on the lonesome moun- 


tains; on the rough stones did she bear the youngest of her 

Now runneth she foolishly in the arid wilderness, and 
seeketh and seeketh the soft sward — ^mine old, wild wisdom! 

On the soft sward of your hearts, my friends! — on your 
love, would she fain couch her dearest one! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

24. In the Happy Isles 

The figs fall from the trees, they are good and sweet; and in 
falling the red skins of them break. A north wind am I to ripe 

Thus, like figs, do these doctrines fall for you, my friends: 
imbibe now their juice and their sweet substance! It is autumn 
all around, and clear sky, and afternoon. 

Lo, what fullness is around us! And out of the midst of 
superabundance, it is delightful to look out upon distant seas. 

Once did people say God, when they looked out upon dis- 
tant seas; now, however, have I taught you to say, Superman. 

God is a conjecture: but I do not wish your conjecturing to 
reach beyond your creating will. 

Could ye create a God? — ^Then, I pray you, be silent about 
all gods! But ye could well create the Superman. 

Not perhaps ye yourselves, my brethren! But into fathers 
and forefathers of the Superman could ye transform your- 
selves: and let that be your best creating! — 


God is a conjecture: but I should like your conjecturing re- 
stricted to the conceivable. 

Could ye conceive a God? — ^But let this mean Will to Truth 
unto you, that everything be transformed into the humanly 
conceivable, the humanly visible, the humanly sensible! Your 
own discernment shall ye follow out to the end! 

And what ye have called the world shall but be created by 
you: your reason, your likeness, your will, your love, shall it 
itself become! And verily, for your bliss, ye discerning ones! 

And how would ;fe endure life without that hope, ye dis- 
cerning ones? Neither in the inconceivable could ye have been 
born, nor in the irrational. 

But that I may reveal my heart entirely imto you, my friends : 
ij there were gods, how could I endure it to be no God! There- 
fore there are no gods. 

Yea, I have drawn the conclusion; now, however, doth it 
draw me. — 

God is a conjecture: but who could drink all the bitterness 
of this conjecture without dying? Shall his faith be taken from 
the creating one, and from the eagle his flights into eagle- 

God is a thought — ^it maketh all the straight crooked, and all 
that standeth reel. What? Time would be gone, and all the 
perishable would be but a lie? 

To think this is giddiness and vertigo to human limbs, and 
even vomiting to the stomach: verily, the reeling sickness do 
I call it, to conjecture such a thing. 

Evil do I call it and misanthropic: all that teaching about 
the one, and the plenum, and the unmoved, and the sufficient, 
and the imperishable! 

All the imperishable — that’s but a simile, and the poets lie 
too much. — 


But of time and of becoming shall the best similes speak: a 
praise shall they be, and a justification of all perishableness! 

Creating — ^that is the great salvation from suJffering, and 
life's alleviation. But for the creator to appear, suffering itself 
is needed, and much transformation. 

Yea, much bitter dying must there be in your life, ye 
creators! Thus are ye advocates and justifiers of all perishable- 

For the creator himself to be the new-born child, he must 
also be willing to be the child-bearer, and endure the pangs of 
the child-bearer. 

Verily, through a hundred souls went I my way, and 
through a hundred cradles and birth-throes. Many a farewell 
have I taken; I know the heart-breaking last hours. 

But so willeth it my aeating Will, my fate. Or, to tell you 
it more candidly : just such a fate — ^willeth my Will. 

All feeling suffereth in me, and is in prison: but my willing 
ever cometh to me as mine emancipator and comforter. 

Willing emancipateth: that is the true doctrine of will and 
emancipation — ^so teacheth you Zarathustra. 

No longer willing, and no longer valuing, and no longer 
creating! Ah, that that great debility may ever be far from me! 

And also in discerning do I feel only my will’s procreating 
,and evolving delight; and if there be innocence in my knowl- 
edge, it is because there is will to procreation in it. 

Away from God and gods did this will allure me; what 
would there be to create if there were — ^gods! 

But to man doth it ever impel me anew, my fervent creative 
will; thus impelleth it the hammer to the stone. 

Ah, ye men, within the stone slumbereth an image for me, 
the image of my visions! Ah, that it should slumber in the 
hardest, ugliest stone! 



Now rageth my hammer ruthlessly against its prison. From 
the stone fly the fragments: what’s that to me? 

I will complete it: for a shadow came unto me — ^the stillest 
and lightest of all things once came imto me! 

'The beauty of the superman came unto me as a shadow. Ah, 
my brethren! Of what account now are — the gods to me! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra, 

25 . The Pitiful 

My friends, there hath arisen a satire on your friend: "Be- 
hold Zarathustra! Walketh he not amongst us as if amongst 

But it is better said in this wise: "The discerning one walketh 
amongst men as amongst animals." 

Man himself is to the discerning one: the animal with red 

How hath that happened unto him? Is it not because he hath 
had to be ashamed too oft? 

O my friends! Thus speaketh the discerning one: shame, 
shame, shame — ^that is the history of man! 

And on that account doth the noble one enjoin on him- 
self not to abash: bashfulness doth he enjoin himself in 
presence of all sufferers. 

Verily, I like them not, the merdful ones, whose bliss is 
in their pity: too destitute are they of bashfulness. 

If I must be pitiful, I dislike to be called so; and if I be so, 
it is preferably at a distance. 



Preferably also do I shroud my head, and flee, before being 
recognised; and thus do I bid you do, my friends! 

May my destiny ever lead unafflicted ones like you across my 
path, and those with whom I ma'] have hope and repast and 
honey in common! 

Verily, I have done this and that for the afflicted: but some- 
thing better did I always seem to do when I had learned to 
enjoy myself better. 

Since humanity came into being, man hath enjoyed himself 
too little: that alone, my brethren, is our original sin! 

And when we learn better to enjoy ourselves, then do we 
unlearn best to give pain unto others, and to contrive pain. 

Therefore do I wash the hand that hath helped the sufferer; 
therefore do I wipe also my soul. 

For in seeing the sufferer suffering — ^thereof was I ashamed 
on account of his shame; and in helping him, sorely did I 
wound his pride. 

Great obligations do not make grateful, but revengeful; and 
when a small kindness is not forgotten, it becometh a gnawing 

"Be shy in accepting! Distinguish by accepting!” — ^thus do 
I advise those who have naught to bestow. 

I, however, am a bestower: willingly do I bestow as friend 
to friends. Strangers, however, and the poor, may pluck for 
themselves the fruit from my tree: thus doth it cause less 

Beggars, however, one should entirely do away with! Verily, 
it annoyeth one to give unto them, and it annoyeth one not to 
give unto them. 

And likewise sinners and bad consciences! Believe me, my 
friends: the sting of conscience teacheth one to sting. 



The worst things, however, are the petty thoughts. Verily, 
better to have done evilly than to have thought pettily! 

To be sure, ye say: **The delight in petty evils spareth one 
many a great evil deed.** But here one should not wish to be 

Like a boil is the evil deed: it itdieth and irritateth and 
breaketh forth — ^it speaketh honourably. 

**Behold, I am disease,** saith the evil deed: that is its 

But like infection is the petty thought: it creepeth and 
hideth, and wanteth to be nowhere — ^until the whole body is 
decayed and withered by the petty infection. 

To him however, who is possessed of a devil, I would 
whisper this word in the ear: ''Better for thee to rear up thy 
devil! Even for thee there is stUl a path to greatness!** — 

Ah, my brethren! One knoweth a little too mudhi about every 
one! And many a one becometh transparent to us, but still we 
can by no means penetrate him. 

It is difficult to live among men because silence is so difficult. 

And not to him who is offensive to us are we most unfair, 
but to him who doth not concern us at all. 

If, however, thou hast a suffering friend, then be a resting- 
place for his suffering; like a hard bed, however, a camp-bed: 
thus wilt thou serve him best. 

And if a friend doeth thee wrong, then say: "I forgive thee 
what thou hast done unto me; that thou hast done it unto 
thyself f however — ^how could I forgive that!*’ 

Thus speaketh all great love: it surpasseth even forgiveness 
and pity. 

One should hold fast one's heart; for when one letteth it go, 
how quickly doth one’s head run away! 

Ah, where in the world have there been greater follies than 


with the pitiful? And what in the world hath caused more 
suffering than the follies of the pitiful? 

Woe unto all loving ones who have not an elevation which 
is above their pity! 

Thus spake the devil unto me, once on a time: ''Even God 
hath his hell: it is his love for man.” 

And lately, did I hear him say these words: "God is dead: 
of his pity for man hath God died.” — 

So be ye warned against pity: from thence there yet cometh 
unto men a heavy cloud! Verily, I understand weather-signs! 

But attend also to this word: All great love is above all its 
pity: for it seeketh — ^to create what is loved! 

"Myself do I offer unto my love, and my neighbour as my- 
self * — ^such is the language of all creators. 

All creators, however, are hard. — 

Thxis spake Zarathustra. 

26, The Priests 

And one day Zarathustra made a sign to his disciples and spake 
these words unto them : 

"Here are priests: but although they are mine enemies, pass 
them quietly and with sleeping swords! 

Even among them there are heroes; many of them have 
suffered too much: — so they want to make others suffer. 

Bad enemies are they: nothing is more revengeful than their 
meekness. And readily doth he soil himself who toucheth 



But my blcxxl is related to theirs; and I want withal to see 
my blood honoured in theirs/’ — 

And when they had passed, a pain attacked Zarathustra; 
but not long had he struggled with the pain, when he began 
to speak thus: 

It moveth my heart for those priests. They also go against 
my taste; but that is the smallest matter unto me, since I am 
among men. 

But I suJffer and have sujffered with them: prisoners are they 
unto me, and stigmatised ones. He whom they call Saviour pul 
them in fetters : — 

In fetters of false values and fatuous wordsi Oh, that some 
one would save them from their Saviour! 

On an isle tiiey once thought they had landed, when the sea 
tossed them about; but behold, it was a slumbering monster! 

False values and fatuous words: these are the worst mon- 
sters for mortals — ^long slumbereth and waiteth the fate that is 
in them. 

But at last it cometh and awaketh and devoureth and en- 
gulfeth whatever hath built tabernacles upon it. 

Oh, just look at those tabernacles which those priests have 
built themselves! Churches, they call their sweet-smelling 

Oh, that f alsified light, that mustified air! Where the soul — 
may not fly aloft to its height! 

But so enjoineth their belief: ”On your knees, up the stair, 
ye sinners!” 

Verily, rather would I see a shameless one than the dis- 
torted eyes of their shame and devotion! 

Who created for themselves such caves and penitence- 
stairs? Was it not those who sought to conceal themselves, and 
were ashamed under the clear sky? 


And only when the dear sky looketh again through rained 
roofs, and down upon grass and red poppies on ruined walls — 
will I again turn my heart to the seats of this God. 

They called God that which opposed and afflicted them: and 
verily, there was much hero-spirit in their worship! 

And they knew not how to love their God otherwise than 
by nailing men to the aoss! 

As corpses they thought to live; in black draped they their 
corpses; even in their talk do I still feel the evil flavour of 

And he who liveth nigh unto them liveth nigh unto black 
pools, wherein the toad singeth his song with sweet gravity. 

Better songs would they have to sing, for me to believe in 
their Saviour: more like saved ones would his disdples have 
to appear unto me! 

Naked, would I like to see them: for beauty alone shoiJd 
preach penitence. But whom would that disguised affliction 

Verily, their saviours themselves came not from freedom 
and freedom’s seventh heaven! Verily, thq^ themselves never 
trod the carpets of knowledge! 

Of defects did the spirit of those saviours consist; but into 
every defect had tiiey put dieir illusion, their stop-gap, which 
thqr called God. 

In their pity was flieir spirit drowned; and when they 
swelled and o’erswelled with pity, there always floated to the 
surface a great folly. 

Eagerly and with shouts drove they their flock over their 
foot-bridge; as if there were but one foot-bridge to the future! 
Verily, those shepherds also were still of the flock! 

Small spirits and spacious souls had diose shepherds; but, 



my brethren, what small domains have even the most spacious 
souls hitherto been! 

Qiaracters of blood did they write on the way they went, and 
their folly taught that truth is proved by blood. 

But blood is the very worst witness to tmth; blood tainteth 
the purest teaching, and tumedi it into delusion and hatred 
of heart. 

And when a person goeth through fire for his teaching — 
what doth that prove! It is more, verily, when out of one’s own 
burning cometh one’s own teaching! 

Sultry heart and cold head; where these meet, there arisedi 
the blusterer, the "Saviour.” 

Greater ones, verily, have there been, and higher-bom ones, 
than those whom the people call saviotirs, those rapturous 

And by still greater ones than any of the saviours must ye 
be saved, my brediren, if ye would find the way to freedom! 

Never yet hath there been a Superman. Naked have I seen 
both of diem, the greatest man and the smallest man; — 

AU-too-similar are they still to each other. Verily, even fixe 
greatest found I — ^all-too-human! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

27 . The Virtuous 

With thunder and heavenly fireworks must one speak to in- 
dolent and somnolent senses. 

But beauty’s voice speaketh gently: it appealeth only to the 
most awakened souls. 


Gently vibrated and laughed unto me to-day my buckler; it 
was beauty's holy laughing and thrilling. 

At you, ye virtuous ones, laughed my beauty to-day. And 
thus came its voice unto me: ''They want — ^to be paid besides!'' 

Ye want to be paid besides, ye virtuous ones! Ye want re- 
ward for virtue, and heaven for earth, and eternity for your to- 

And now ye upbraid me for teaching that there is no reward- 
giver, nor paymaster? And verily, I do not even teach that 
virtue is its own reward. 

Ah! this is my sorrow: into the basis of things have reward 
and punishment been insinuated — and now even into the 
basis of your souls, ye virtuous ones! 

But like the snout of the boar shall my word grub up the 
basis of your souls; a ploughshare will I be called by you. 

All the secrets of your heart shall be brought to light; and 
when ye lie in the sun, grubbed up and broken, then will also 
your falsehood be separated from your truth. 

For this is your truth: ye are too pure for the filth of the 
Words: vengeance, punishment, recompense, retribution. 

Ye love your virtue as a mother loveth her child; but when 
did one hear of a mother wanting to be paid for her love? 

It is your dearest Self, your virtue. The ring's thirst is in 
you: to reach itself again struggleth every ring, and turneth 

And like the star that goeth out, so is every work of your 
virtue: ever is its light on its way and travelling — and when 
will it cease to be on its way? 

Thus is the light of your virtue still on its way, even when 
its work is done. Be it forgotten and dead, still its ray of light 
liveth and travelleth. 

That your virtue is your Self, and not an outward thing, a 



skin, or a cloak: that is the truth from the basis of your souls, 
ye virtuous ones! — 

But sure enough there are those to whom virtue meaneth 
writhing under the lash: and ye have hearkened too much unto 
their crying! 

And others are there who call virtue the slothfulness of 
their vices; and when once their hatred and jealousy relax the 
limbs, their ''justice*' becometh lively and rubbeth its sleepy 

And others are there who are drawn downwards: their 
devils draw them. But the more they sink, the more ardently 
gloweth their eye, and the longing for their God. 

Ah! their crying also hath readied your ears, ye virtuous 
ones: "What I am not^ that, that is God to me, and virtue!" 

And others are there who go along heavily and creakingly, 
like carts taking stones downhill: they talk much of dignity 
and virtue — ^their drag they call virtue! 

And others are there who are like eight-day dcxks when 
wound up; they tick, and want people to call ticking — ^virtue. 

Verily, in those have I mine amusement: wherever I find 
such docks I shall wind them up with my m<xkery, and they 
shall even whirr thereby! 

And others are proud of their modicum of righteousness, 
and for the sake of it do violence to all things: so that the world 
is drowned in their unrighteousness. 

Ah! how ineptly cometh the word "virtue" out of their 
mouth! And when they say: "I am just," it always soundeth 
like: "I am just — ^revenged!" 

With their virtues they want to scratch out the eyes of their 
enemies; and they elevate themselves only that they may lower 

And again there are those who sit in their swamp, and speak 


thus from among the bulrushes: ''Virtue — that is to sit quietly 
in the swamp. 

We bite no one, and go out of the way of him who would 
bite; and in all matters we have the opinion that is given us.’* 

And again there are those who love attitudes, and thixik that 
virtue is a sort of attitude. 

Their knees continually adore, and their hands are eulogies 
of virtue, but their heart knoweth naught thereof. 

And again there are those who regard it as virtue to say: 
"Virtue is necessary**; but after all they believe only that police- 
men are necessary. 

And many a one who cannot see men’s loftiness, calleth it 
virtue to see their baseness far too well: thus calleth he his 
evil eye virtue. — 

And some want to be edified and raised up, and call it 
virtue: and others want to be cast down, — ^and likewise call 
it virtue. 

And thus do almost all think that they participate in virtue; 
and at least every one claimeth to be an authority on "good” 
and "evil.” 

But Zarathustra came not to say unto all those liars and 
fools: "What do ye know of virtue! What cou/d ye know of 
virtue!” — 

But that ye, my friends, might become weary of the old 
words which ye have learned from the fools and liars: 

That ye might become weary of the words "reward,” "retri- 
bution,” "punishment,” "righteous vengeance.” — 

That ye might become weary of saying: "That an action is 
good is because it is unselfish.” 

Ah! my friends! That your very Self be in your action, as 
the mother is in the child: let that be your formula of virtue! 



Verily, I have taken from you a hundred formulas and your 
virtue’s favourite playthings; and now ye upbraid me, as 
children upbraid. 

They played by the sea — ^then came there a wave and swept 
their playthings into the deep: and now do they cry. 

But the same wave shall bring them new playthings, and 
spread before them new speckled shells! 

Thus will they be comforted; and like them shall ye also, my 
friends, have your comforting — ^and new speckled shells! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

28. The Rabble 

Life is a well of delight; but where the rabble also drink, 
there all fountains axe poisoned. 

To everything cleanly am I well disposed; but I hate to see 
the grinning mouths and the thirst of the unclean. 

They cast their eye down into the fountain: and now 
glanceth up to me their odious smile out of the fountain. 

The holy water have they poisoned with their lustfulness; 
and when they called their filthy dreams delight, then poisoned 
they also the words. 

Indignant becometh the flame when they put their damp 
hearts to the fire; the spirit itself bubbleth and smoketh when 
the rabble approach the fire. 

Mawkish and over-mellow becometh the fruit in their 
hands: unsteady, and withered at the top, doth their look make 
the fruit-tree. 


And many a one who hath turned away from life, hath only 
turned away from the rabble: he hated to share with them 
fountain, flame, and fruit. 

And many a one who hath gone into the wilderness and 
suffered thirst with beasts of prey, disliked only to sit at the 
dstem with filthy camel-drivers. 

And many a one who hath come along as a destroyer, and 
as a hailstorm to all cornfields, wanted merely to put his foot 
into the jaws of the rabble, and thus stop their throat. 

And it is not the mouthful which hath most choked me, to 
know that life itself requireth enmity and death and torture- 
crosses: — 

But I asked once, and suffocated almost with my question: 
Whsit? Is the rabble also necessary for lif e.^ 

Are poisoned fountains necessary, and stinking fires, and 
filthy dreams, and maggots in the bread of life.^ 

Not my hatred, but my loathing, gnawed hungrily at my life! 
Ah, ofttimes became I weary of spirit, when I found even the 
rabble spiritual! 

And on the rulers turned I my back, when I saw what the7 
now call ruling: to traffic and bargain for power — ^with the 

Amongst peoples of a strange language did I dwell, with 
stopped ears; so that the language of their trafficking might 
remain strange unto me, and their bargaining for power. 

And holding my nose, I went morosely through all yester- 
days and todays: verily, badly smell all yesterdays and todays 
of the scribbling rabble! 

Like a cripple become deaf, and blind, and dumb — ^thus 
have I lived long; that I might not live with the power-rabble, 
the scribe-rabble, and the pleasure-rabble. 

Toilsomely did my spirit mount stairs, and cautiously; alms 


of delight were its refreshmeat; on the staff did life creep 
along with the blind one. 

What hath happened unto me? How have I freed myself 
from loathing? Who hath rejuvenated mine eye? How have I 
flown to the height where no rabble any longer sit at the 

Did my loathing itself create for me wings and fountain- 
divining powers? Verily, to the loftiest height had I to fly, to 
find again the well of delight! 

Oh, I have found it, my brethren! Here on the loftiest height 
bubbleth up for me the well of delight! And there is a life at 
whose waters none of the rabble drink with me! 

Almost too violently dost thou flow for me, thou fountain 
of delight! And often emptiest thou the goblet again, in want- 
ing to fill it! 

And yet must I learn to approach thee more modestly: far 
too violently doth my heart still flow towards thee; — 

My heart on which my summer burneth, my short, hot, 
melancholy, over-happy summer: how my summer heart 
longeth for thy coolness! 

Past, the lingering distress of my spring! Past, the wicked- 
ness of my snowflakes in June! Summer have I become entirely, 
and summer-noontide! 

A summer on the loftiest height, with cold fountains and 
blissful stillness; oh, come, my friends, that the stillness may 
become more blissful! 

For this is our height and our home: too high and steep do 
we here dwell for all uncleanly ones and their thirst. 

Cast but your pure eyes into the well of my delight, my 
friends! How could it become turbid thereby! It shall laugjh 
back to you with its purity. 


On the tree of the future build we our nest; eagles shall 
bring us lone ones food in their beaks! 

Verily, no food of which the impure could be fellow-par- 
takers! Fire, would they think they devoured, and burn their 

Verily, no abodes do we here keep ready for the impure! An 
ice-cave to their bodies would our happiness be, and to their 

And as strong winds will we live above them, neighbours to 
the eagles, neighbours to the snow, neighbours to the sun: thus 
live the strong winds. 

And like a wind will I one day blow amongst them, and with 
my spirit, take the breath from their spirit: thus willeth my 

Verily, a strong wind is Zarathustra to all low places; and 
this counsel counselleth he to his enemies, and to whatever 
spitteth and speweth: 'Take care not to spit against the 
wind!*’ — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

2g. The Tarantulas 

Lo, THIS is the tarantula’s den! Would’st thou see the taran- 
tula itself? Here hangeth its web: touch this, so that it may 

There cometh the tarantula willingly: Welcome, tarantula! 
Black on thy back is thy triangle and symbol; and I know also 
what is in thy soul. 



Revenge is in thy soul: -wherever thou bitest, there ariseth 
black scab; with revenge, thy poison maketh the soul giddy! 

Thus do I speak unto you in parable, ye who make the soul 
giddy, ye preachers of equality! Tarantulas are ye unto me, and 
secretly revengeful ones! 

But I will soon bring your hiding-places to the light: there- 
fore do I laugh in your face my laughter of the height. 

Therefore do I tear at your wdb, that your rage may lure you 
out of your den of lies, and that your revenge may leap forth 
from behind your word “justice.” 

Because, for man to be redeemed from revenge — that is for 
me the bridge to the highest hope, and a rainbow after long 

Otherwise, however, would the tarantulas have it. "Let it 
be very justice for the world to become full of the storms of 
our vengeance” — ^thus do they talk to one another. 

"Vengeance will we xise, and insult, against all who are not 
like us” — ^thus do the tarantula-hearts pledge themselves. 

"And 'Will to Equality’ — that itself shall henceforth be the 
name of virtue; and against all that hath power will we raise 
an outcry!” 

Ye preachers of equality, the tyrant-frenzy of impotence 
crieth thus in you for "equality”: your most secret tyrant- 
longings disguise themselves thus in virtue-words! 

Fretted conceit and suppressed en-vy — perhaps your fathers’ 
conceit and envy: in you break they forth as flame and frenzy 
of vengeance. 

What the father hath hid cometh out in the son; and oft 
have I found in the son the father’s revealed secret. 

Inspired ones th^ resemble: but it is not the heart that in- 
spireth them — ^but vengeance. And when thq?^ become subtle 
and cold, it is not spirit, but en-yy, that maketh them so. 


Their jealousy leadeth them also into thinkers' paths; and 
this is the sign of their jealousy — ^they always go too far: so 
that their fatigue hath at last to go to sleep on the snow. 

In all their lamentations soundeth vengeance, in all their 
eulogies is maleficence; and being judge seemeth to them bliss. 

But thus do I counsel you, my friends: distrust all in whom 
the impulse to punish is powerful! 

They are people of bad race and lineage; out of their coun- 
tenances peer the hangman and the sleuth-hound. 

Distrust all those who talk much of their justice! Verily, in 
their souls not only honey is lacking. 

And when they call themselves '*the good and just," forget 
not, that for them to be Pharisees, nothing is lacking but — 

My friends, I will not be mixed up and confounded with 

There are those who preach my doctrine of life, and are at 
the same time preachers of equality, and tarantulas. 

That they speak in favour of life, though they sit in their 
den, these poison-spiders, and withdrawn from life — ^is be- 
cause they would thereby do injury. 

To those would they thereby do injury who have power at 
present: for with those the preaching of death is still most at 

Were it otherwise, then would the tarantulas teach other- 
wise: and they themselves were formerly the best world- 
maligners and heretic-burners. 

With these preachers of equality will I not be mixed up and 
confounded. For thus speaketh justice unto me: "Men are not 

And neither shall they become so! What would be my love 
to the Superman, if I spake ottierwise? 



On a thousand bridges and piers shall they throng to the 
future, and always shall there be more war and inequality 
among them: thus doth my great love make me speak! 

Inventors of figures and phantoms shall they be in their 
hostilities; and with those figures and phantoms shall they yet 
fight with each other the supreme fight! 

Good and evil, and rich and poor, and high and low, and 
all names of values: weapons shall they be, and sounding signs, 
that life must again and again surpass itself! 

Aloft will it build itself with columns and stairs — ^lif e itself : 
into remote distances would it gaze, and out towards blissful 
beauties — therefore doth it require elevation! 

And because it requireth elevation, therefore doth it re- 
quire steps, and variance of steps and climbers! To rise striveth 
life, and in rising to surpass itself. 

And just behold, my friends! Here where the tarantula’s den 
is, riseth aloft an ancient temple’s ruins — ^just behold it with 
enlightened eyes! 

Verily, he who here towered aloft his thoughts in stone, 
knew as well as the wisest ones about the seaet of life! 

That there is struggle and inequality even in beauty, and 
war for power and supremacy: that doth he here teach us in 
the plainest parable. 

How divinely do vault and arch here contrast in the struggle : 
how with light and shade they strive against each other, the 
divinely striving ones. — 

Thus, steadfast and beautiful, let us also be enemies, my 
friends! Divinely will we strive against one another! — 

Alas! There hath the tarantula bit me myself, mine old 
enemy! Divinely steadfast and beautiful, it hath bit me on 
the finger! 

* ‘Punishment must there be, and justice” — ^so thinketh it: 



''not gratuitously shall he here sing songs in honour of 

Yea, it hath revenged itself! And alas! now will it make 
my soul also di22y with revenge! 

That T may not turn di22y, however, bind me fast, my 
friends, to this pillar! Rather will I be a pillar-saint than a 
whirl of vengeance! 

Verily, no cyclone or whirlwind is Zarathustra: and if he 
be a dancer, he is not at all a tarantula-dancer! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

^o. The Famous Wise Ones 

The people have ye served and the people's superstition — not 
the truth! — all ye famous wise ones! And just on that account 
did they pay you reverence. 

And on that account also did they tolerate your unbelief, 
because it was a pleasantry and a by-path for the people. Thus 
doth the master give free scope to his slaves, and even en- 
joyeth their presumptuousness. 

But he who is hated by the people, as the wolf by the dogs 
— ^is the free spirit, the enemy of fetters, the non-adorer, the 
dweller in the woods. 

To hunt him out of his lair — that was always called "sense 
of right” by the people: on him do they still hound their 
sharpest-toothed dogs. 

"For there the truth is, where the people are! Woe, woe to 
the seeking ones!” — ^thus hath it echoed through all time. 


Your people would ye justify in their reverence: that called 
ye ''Will to Truth/’ ye famous wise ones! 

And your heart hath always said to itself : "From the people 
have I come: from thence came to me also the voice of God/’ 

Stiff-necked and artful, like the ass, have ye always been, as 
the advocates of the people. 

And many a powerful one who wanted to run well with the 
people, hath harnessed in front of his horses — ^a donkey, a 
famous wise man. 

And now, ye famous wise ones, I would have you finally 
throw off entirely the skin of the lion! 

The skin of die beast of prey, the speckled skin, and the 
dishevelled locks of the investigator, the searcher, and the con- 

Ah! for me to learn to believe in your "conscientiousness,’* 
ye would first have to break your venerating will. 

Conscientious — so call I him who goeth into God-forsaken 
wildernesses, and hath broken his venerating heart. 

In the yellow sands and burnt by the sun, he doubtless 
peereth thirstily at the isles rich in fountains, where life re- 
poseth under shady trees. 

But his thirst doth not persuade him to become like those 
comfortable ones: for where there are oases, there are also 

Hungry, fierce, lonesome, God-forsaken: so doth the lion- 
will wish itself. 

Free from the happiness of slaves, redeemed from deities 
and adorations, fearless and fear-inspiring, grand and lone- 
some: so is the will of the conscientious. 

In the wilderness have ever dwelt the conscientious, the 
free spirits, as lords of the wilderness; but in the cities dwell 
the well-foddered, famous wise ones — the draught-beasts. 


For, always do they draw, as asses — ^the peoples carts! 

Not that I on that account upbraid them: but serving ones 
do they remain, and harnessed ones, even though they glitter 
in golden harness. 

And often have they been good servants and worthy of their 
hire. For thus saith virtue: "If thou must be a servant, seek 
him unto whom thy service is most useful! 

The spirit and virtue of thy master shall advance by thou 
being his servant: thus wilt thou thyself advance with his 
spirit and virtue!’’ 

And verily, ye famous wise ones, ye servants of the people! 
Ye yourselves have advanced with the people’s spirit and vir- 
tue — ^and the people by you! To your honour do I say it! 

But the people ye remain for me, even with your virtues, 
the people with purblind eyes — ^the people who know not what 
spirit is! 

Spirit is life which itself cutteth into life: by its own torture 
doth it increase its own knowledge, — did ye know that before? 

And the spirit’s happiness is this: to be anointed and conse- 
crated with tears as a sacrificial victim, — did ye know that be- 

And the blindness of the blind one, and his seeking and 
groping, shall yet testify to the power of the sun into which 
he hath gazed, — did ye know that before? 

And with mountains shall the discerning one learn to build! 
It is a small thing for the spirit to remove mountains, — did ye 
know that before? 

Ye know only the sparks of the spirit: but ye do not see the 
anvil which it is, and the cruelty of its hammer! 

Verily, ye know not the spirit’s pride! But still less could 
ye endure the spirit’s humility, should it ever want to speak! 

And never yet could ye cast your spirit into a pit of snow: 



ye are not hot enough for tiiat! Thus are ye iinaware, also, of 
the delight of its coldness. 

In all respects, however, ye make too familiar with the spirit; 
and out of wisdom have ye often made an alms-house and a 
hospital for bad poets. 

Ye are not eagles : thus have ye never experienced the happi- 
ness of the alarm of the spirit. And he who is not a bird should 
not camp above abysses. 

Ye seem to me lukewarm ones: but coldly floweth all deep 
knowledge. Ice-cold are the innermost wells of the spirit: a 
refreshment to hot hands and handlers. 

Respectable do ye there stand, and stiff, and with straight 
backs, ye famous wise ones! — ^no strong wind or will im- 
pelleth you. 

Have ye ne’er seen a sail crossing the sea, rounded and in- 
flated, and trembling with the violence of the wind.^ 

Like the sail trembling with the violence of the spirit, doth 
my wisdom cross the sea — ^my wild wisdom! 

But ye servants of the people, ye famous wise ones — ^how 
could ye go with me! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

The Night-Song 

’Tis night: now do all gushing fountains speak louder. And 
my soul also is a gushing fountain. 

’Tis night: now only do all songs of the loving ones awake. 
And my soul also is the song of a loving one. 

Something unappeased, unappeasable, is within me; it 


longeth to find expression. A craving for love is within me, 
which speaketh itself the language of love. 

Light am I : ah, that I were night! But it is my lonesomeness 
to be begirt with light! 

Ah, that I were dark and nightly! How would I suck at the 
breasts of light! 

And you yourselves would I bless, ye twinkling starlets and 
glow-worms aloft! — ^and would rejoice in the gifts of your 

But I live in mine own light, I drink again into myself the 
flames that break forth from me. 

I know not the happiness of the receiver; and oft have I 
dreamt that stealing must be more blessed than receiving. 

It is my poverty that my hand never ceaseth bestowing; it is 
mine envy that I see waiting eyes and the brightened nights of 

Oh, the misery of all bestowers! Oh, the darkening of my 
sun! Oh, the craving to crave! Oh, the violent hunger in satiety! 

They take from me: but do I yet touch their soul? There is a 
gap ’twixt giving and receiving; and the smallest gap hath 
finally to be bridged over. 

A hunger ariseth out of my beauty: I should like to injure 
those I illumine; I should like to rob those I have gifted: — 
thus do I himger for wickedness. 

Withdrawing my hand when another hand already 
stretcheth out to it; hesitating like the cascade, which hesi- 
tateth even in its leap : — ^thus do I hunger for wickedness ! 

Such revenge doth mine abundance think of: such mischief 
welleth out of my lonesomeness. 

My happiness in bestowing died in bestowing; my virtue 
became weary of itself by its abundance! 

He who ever bestoweth is in danger of losing his shame; to 


him who ever dispenseth, the hand and heart become callous 
by very dispensing. 

Mine eye no longer overfloweth for the shame of suppliants; 
my hand hath become too hard for the trembling of filled 

Whence have gone the tears of mine eye, and the down of 
my heart? Oh, the lonesomeness of all bestowers! Oh, the 
silence of all shining ones! 

Many suns circle in desert space: to all that is dark do th^ 
speak with their light — ^but to me they are silent. 

Oh, this is the hostility of light to the shining one: un- 
pityingly doth it pxirsue its course. 

Unfair to the shining one in its innermost heart, cold to the 
suns: — ^thus travelleth every sun. 

Like a storm do the suns pursue their courses: that is their 
travelling. Their inexorable will do they follow: that is their 

Oh, ye only is it, ye dark, nightly ones, that extract warmth 
from the shining ones! Oh, ye only drink milk and refreshment 
from the light's udders! 

Ah, there is ice around me; my hand burneth with the 
iciness! Ah, there is thirst in me; it panteth after your thirst! 

*Tis night: alas, that I have to be light! And thirst for the 
nightly! And lonesomeness! 

'Tis night: now doth my longing break forth in me as a 
fountain, — ^for speech do I long. 

'Tis night: now do all gushing fountains speak louder. And 
my soul also is a gushing fountain. 

’Tis night: now do all songs of loving ones awake. And 
my soul also is the song of a loving one. — 

Thus sang Zarathustra. 



^2. The Dance-Song 

One evening went Zarathustra and his disciples through the 
forest; £uad when he sought for a well, lo, he lighted upon a 
green meadow peacefully surrounded by trees and bushes, 
where maidens were dancing together. As soon as the maidens 
recognised Zarathustra, they ceased dancing; Zarathustra, how- 
ever, approached them with friendly mien and spake these 

Cease not your dancing, ye lovely maidens! No game-spoiler 
hath come to you with evil eye, no enemy of maidens. 

God’s advocate am I with the devil: he, however, is the 
spirit of gravity. How could I, ye light-footed ones, be hostile 
to divine dances? Or to maidens’ feet with fine ankles? 

To be sure, I am a forest, and a night of dark trees: but he 
who is not afraid of my darkness, will find banks full of roses 
under my cypresses. 

And even the little God may he find, who is dearest to 
maidens: beside the well lieth he quietly, with closed eyes. 

Verily, in broad daylight did he fall asleep, the sluggard! 
Had he perhaps chased butterflies too much? 

Upbraid me not, ye beautiful dancers, when I chasten the 
little God somewhat! He will cry, certainly, and weep — ^but 
he is laughable even when weeping! 

And with tears in his eyes shall he ask you for a dance; and 
I myself will sing a song to his dance: 

A dance-song and satire on the spirit of gravity my su- 
premest, powerfulest devil, who is said to be 'lord of the 
world,” — 



And this is the song that Zarathustra sang when Cupid and 
the maidens danced together: 

Of late did I gaze into thine eye, O Life! And into the un- 
fathomable did I there seem to sink. 

But thou pulledst me out with a golden angle; derisively 
didst thou laugh when I called thee unfathomable. 

"Such is the language of all fish,’* saidst thou; "what they 
do not fathom is unfathomable. 

But changeable am I only, and wild, and altogether a 
woman, and no virtuous one: 

Though I be called by you men the 'profound one,’ or the 
'faithful one,’ 'the eternal one,’ 'the mysterious one.’ 

But ye men endow us always with your own virtues — ^alas, 
ye virtuous ones!” 

Thus did she laugh, the unbelievable one; but never do I be- 
lieve her and her laughter, when she speaketh evil of herself. 

And when I talked face to face with my wild Wisdom, she 
said to me angrily: "Thou wiliest, thou cravest, thou lovest; 
on that account alone dost thou praise Life!” 

Then had I almost answered indignantly and told the truth 
to the angry one; and one cannot answer more indignantly 
than when one "telleth the truth” to one’s Wisdom. 

For thus do things stand with us three. In my heart do I love 
only Life — ^and verily, most when I hate her! 

But that I am fond of Wisdom, and often too fond, is be- 
cause she reminded! me very strongly of Life! 

She hath her eye, her laugh, and even her golden angle-rod: 
am I responsible for it that both are so alike? 

And when once Life asked me: "Who is she then, this Wis- 
dom?” — ^then said I eagerly: "Ah, yes! Wisdom! 



One thirsteth for her and is not satisfied, one looketh 
through veils, one graspeth through nets. 

Is she beautiful? What do I know! But the oldest carps are 
still lured by her. 

Changeable is she, and wayward; often have I seen her bite 
her lip, and pass the comb against the grain of her hair. 

Perhaps she is wicked and false, and altogether a woman; 
but when she speaketh ill of herself, just then doth she seduce 

When I had said this unto Life, then laughed she mali- 
ciously, and shut her eyes. *'Of whom dost thou spealc?" said 
she. * 'Perhaps of me? 

And if thou wert right — ^is it proper to say that in such wise 
to my face! But now, pray, speak also of thy Wisdom!” 

Ah, and now hast thou again opened thine eyes, O beloved 
Life! And into the unfathomable have I again seemed to 
sink. — 

Thus sang Zarathustra, But when the dance was over and 
the maidens had departed, he became sad. 

"The sun hath been long set,” said he at last, "the meadow 
is damp, and from the forest cometh coolness. 

An unknown presence is about me, and gazeth thoughtfully. 
What! Thou livest still, Zarathustra? 

Why? Wherefore? Whereby? Whither? Where? How? Is 
it not folly still to live? — 

Ah, my friends; the evening is it which thus interrogateth in 
me. Forgive me my sadness ! 

Evening hath come on: forgive me that evening hath come 

Thus sang Zarathustra. 



The Grave-Song 

**Yonder is the grave-island, the silent isle; yonder also are 
the graves of my youth. Thither will I carry an evergreen 
wreath of life.*' 

Resolving thus in my heart, did I sail o*er the sea. — 

Oh, ye sights and scenes of my youth! Oh, all ye gleams of 
love, ye divine fleeting gleams! How could ye perish so soon 
for me! I think of you to-day as my dead ones. 

From you, my dearest dead ones, cometh imto me a sweet 
savour, heart-opening and melting. Verily, it convulseth and 
openeth the heart of the lone seafarer. 

Still am I the richest and most to be envied — the lone- 
somest one! For I have possessed you, and ye possess me still. 
Tell me: to whom hath there ever fallen such rosy apples from 
the tree as have fallen imto me? 

Still am I your love’s heir and heritage, blooming to your 
memory with many-hued, wild-growing virtues, O ye dearest 

Ah, we were made to remain nigh unto each other, ye 
kindly strange marvels; and not like timid birds did ye come 
to me and my longing — ^nay, but as trusting ones to a trusting 

Yea, made for faithfulness, like me, and for fond eternities, 
must I now name you by your faithlessness, ye divine glances 
and fleeting gleams: no other name have I yet learnt. 

Verily, too early did ye die for me, ye fugitives. Yet did ye 
not flee from me, nor did I flee from you: innocent are we to 
each other in our faithlessness. 

To kill mej did they strangle you, ye singing birds of my 



hopes! Yea, at you, ye dearest ones, did malice ever shoot its 
arrows — ^to hit my heart! 

And they hit it! Because ye were always my dearest, my 
possession and my possessedness: on that account had ye to die 
young, and far too early! 

At my most vulnerable point did they shoot the arrow — 
namely, at you, whose skin is like down — or more like the 
smile that dieth at a glance! 

But this word will I say unto mine enemies : What is all man- 
slaughter in comparison with what ye have done unto me! 

Worse evil did ye do unto me than all manslaughter; the 
irretrievable did ye take from me: — ^thus do I speak unto you, 
mine enemies! 

Slew ye not my youth’s visions and dearest marvels! My 
playmates took ye from me, the blessed spirits! To their 
memory do I deposit this wreath and this curse. 

This curse upon you, mine enemies! Have ye not made mine 
eternal short, as a tone dieth away in a cold night! Scarcely, as 
the twinkle of divine eyes, did it come to me — as a fleeting 

Thus spake once in a happy hour my purity: "Divine shall 
everything be unto me.” 

Then did ye haunt me with foul phantoms; ah, whither 
hath that happy hour now fled! 

"All days shall be holy unto me” — so spake once the wis- 
dom of my youth: verily, the language of a joyous wisdom! 

But then did ye enemies steal my nights, and sold them to 
sleepless torture: ah, whither hath that joyous wisdom now 

Once did I long for happy auspices : then did ye lead an owl- 
monster across my path, an adverse sign. Ah, whither did my 
tender longing then flee? 



All loathing did I once vow to renounce: then did ye change 
my nigh ones and nearest ones into ulcerations. Ah, whither 
did my noblest vow then flee? 

As a blind one did I onoe walk in blessed ways: then did ye 
cast filth on the blind one’s course: and now is he disgusted 
with the old footpath. 

And when I performed my hardest task, and celebrated the 
triumph of my victories, then did ye make those who loved me 
call out that I then grieved them most. 

Verily, it was always your doing: ye embittered to me my 
best honey, and the diligence of my best bees. 

To my charity have ye ever sent the most impudent beggars; 
around my sympathy have ye ever crowded the incurably 
shameless. Thus have ye wounded the faith of my virtue. 

And when I offered my holiest as a sacrifice, immediately 
did your **piety” put its fatter gifts beside it: so that my holiest 
suffocated in the fumes of your fat. 

And once did I want to dance as I had never yet danced: be- 
yond all heavens did I want to dance. Then did ye seduce my 
favourite minstrel. 

And now hath he stmck up an awful, melancholy air; alas, 
he tooted as a mournful horn to mine ear! 

Murderous minstrel, instrument of evil, most innocent in- 
strument! Already did I stand prepared for the best dance: then 
didst thou slay my rapture with thy tones! 

Only in the dance do I know how to speak the parable of 
the highest things: — and now hath my grandest parable re- 
mained unspoken in my limbs! 

Unspoken and unrealised hath my highest hope remained! 
And there have perished for me all the visions and consolations 
of my youth! 



How did I ever bear it? How did I survive and surmount 
such woimds? How did my soul rise again out of those sepul- 

Yea, something invulnerable, unburiable is with me, some- 
thing that would rend rocks asunder: it is called my Will. 
Silently doth it proceed, and unchanged throughout the years. 

Its course will it go upon my feet, mine old Will; hard of 
heart is its nature and invulnerable. 

Invulnerable am I only in my heel. Ever livest thou there, 
and art like thyself, thou most patient one! Ever hast thou 
burst all shackles of the tomb! 

In thee still liveth also the unrealisedness of my youth; and 
as life and youth sittest thou here hopeful on the yellow ruins 
of graves. 

Yea, thou art still for me the demolisher of all graves : Hail 
to thee, my Will! And only where there are graves are there 
resurrections. — 

Thus sang Zarathustra. 

^4. Self-Surpassing 

*‘WiLL to Truth” do ye call it, ye wisest ones, that which im- 
pelleth you and maketh you ardent? 

Will f >r the thinkableness of all being: thus do I call your 

All being would ye make thinkable: for ye doubt with good 
reason whether it be already thinkable. 

But it shall accommodate and bend itself to you! So willeth 



your "will. Smooth shall it become and subject to the spirit, as 
its mirror and reflection. 

That is your entire will, ye wisest ones, as a Will to Power; 
and even when ye speak of good and evil, and of estimates of 

Ye would still create a world before which ye can bow the 
knee: such is your ultimate hope and ecstasy. 

The ignorant, to be sure, the people — ^they are like a river 
on which a boat floateth along: and in the boat sit the estimates 
of value, solemn and disguised. 

Your will and your valuations have ye put on the river of 
becoming; it betrayeth unto me an old Will to Power, what is 
believed by the people as good and evil. 

It was ye, ye wisest ones, who put such guests in this boat, 
and gave them pomp and proud names — ye and your ruling 

Onward the river now carrieth your boat: it must carry it. A 
small matter if the rough wave foameth and angrily resisteth 
its keel! 

It is not the river that is your danger and the end of your 
good and evil, ye wisest ones: but that Will itself, the Will to 
Power — ^the unexhausted, procreating life-will. 

But that ye may understand my gospel of good and evil, for 
that purpose will I tell you my gospel of life, and of the nature 
of all living things. 

The living thing did I follow; I walked in the broadest and 
narrowest paths to learn its nature. 

With a hundred-faced mirror did I catch its glance when its 
mouth was shut, so that its eye might speak unto me. And its 
eye spake unto me. 

But wherever I found living things, there heard I also the 
language of obedience. All living things are obeying things. 

124 thus spake zarathustra 

And this heard I secondly: Whatever cannot obey itself, is 
commanded. Such is the nature of living things. 

This, however, is the third thing which I heard — ^namely, 
that commanding is more difficult than obeying. And not only 
because the commander beareth the burden of all obeyers, and 
because this burden readily crusheth him: — 

An attempt and a risk seemed all commanding unto me; and 
whenever it commandeth, the living thing risketh itself there- 

Yea, even when it commandeth itself, then 'also must it 
atone for its commanding. Of its own law must it become tiie 
judge and avenger and victim. 

How doth this happen! So did I ask myself. What persuadeth 
the living thing to obey, and command, and even be obedient in 

Hearken now unto my word, ye wisest ones! Test it seri- 
ously, whether I have crept into the heart of life itself, and into 
the roots of its heart! 

Wherever I found a living thing, there found I Will to 
Power; and even in the will of the servant found I the will to 
be master. 

That to the stronger the weaker shall serve — ^thereto per- 
suadeth he his will who wotild be master over a still weaker 
one. That delight alone he is unwilling to forego. 

And as the lesser surrendereth himself to the greater that 
he may have delight and power over the least of all, so doth 
even the greatest surrender himself, and staketh — ^life, for the 
sake of power. 

It is the surrender of the greatest to nm risk and danger, 
and play dice for death. 

And where there is sacrifice and service and love-glances, 
there also is the will to be master. By by-ways doth the weaker 



then slink into the fortress, and into the heart of the mightier 
one — and there stealeth power* 

And this secret spake Life herself unto me. '^Behold/' said 
she, ”I am that which must ever surpass itself. 

To be sure, ye call it will to procreation, or impulse towards 
a goal, towards the higher, remoter, more manifold: but all 
that is one and the same secret. 

Rather would I succumb than disown this one thing; and 
verily, where there is succumbing and leaf-falling, lo, there 
doth Life sacrifice itself — ^for power! 

That I have to be struggle, and becoming, and purpose, and 
cross-purpose — ah, he who divineth my will, divineth well also 
on what crooked paths it hath to tread! 

Whatever I create, and however much I love it, — ^soon must 
I be adverse to it, and to my love: so willeth my will. 

And even thou, discerning one, art only a path and foot- 
step of my will: verily, my Will to Power walketh even on the 
feet of thy Will to Truth! 

He certainly did not hit the truth who shot at it the 
formula: ''Will to existence’’: that will — doth not exist! 

For what is not, cannot will; that, however, which is in 
existence — ^how could it still strive for existence! 

Only where there is life, is there also will: not, however, 
Will to Life, but — ^so teach I thee — Will to Power! 

Much is reckoned higher than life itself by the living one; 
but out of the very reckoning speaketh — the Will to 
Power!” — 

Thus did Life once teach me: and thereby, ye wisest ones, 
do I solve you the riddle of your hearts. 

Verily, I say unto you: good and evil which would be ever- 
lasting — it doth not exist! Of its own accord must it ever 
surpass itself anew. 



With your values and formulae of good and evil, ye exercise 
power, ye valuing ones; and that is your secret love, and the 
sparkling, trembling, and overflowing of your souls. 

But a stronger power groweth out of your values, and a new 
surpassing: by it breaketh egg and egg-shell. 

And he who hath to be a aeator in good and evil — verily, 
he hath first to be a destroyer, and break values in pieces. 

Thus doth the greatest evil pertain to the greatest good: 
that, however, is the creating good. — 

Let us speak thereof, ye wisest ones, even though it be bad. 
To be silent is worse; all suppressed truths become poisonous. 

And let everything break up which — can break up by our 
truths! Many a house is still to be built! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

55 . The Sublime Ones 

Calm is the bottom of my sea: who would guess that it hideth 
droll monsters! 

Unmoved is my depth: but it sparkleth with swimming 
enigmas and laughters. 

A sublime one saw I today, a solemn one, a penitent of the 
spirit: Oh, how my soul laughed at his ugliness! 

With upraised breast, and like those who draw in their 
breath: thus did he stand, the sublime one, and in silence: 

O’erhung with ugly truths, the spoil of his hunting, and 
rich in torn raiment; many thorns also hung on him — ^but I 
saw no rose. 



Not yet had he learned laughing and beauty. Gloomy did 
this hunter return from the forest of knowledge. 

From the fight with wild beasts returned he home: but even 
yet a wild beast ga2eth out of his seriousness — ^an unconquered 
wild beast! 

As a tiger doth he ever stand, on the point of springing; but 
I do not like those strained souls; ungracious is my taste to- 
wards all those self -engrossed ones. 

And ye tell me, friend^, that there is to be no dispute about 
taste and tasting? But all life is a dispute about taste and 

Taste; that is weight at the same time, and scales and 
weigher; and alas for every living thing that would live with- 
out dispute about weight and scales and weigher! 

Should he become weary of his sublimeness, this sublime 
one, then only will his beauty begin — ^and then only will I taste 
him and find him savoury. 

And only when he turneth away from himself will he 
overleap his own shadow — ^and verily! into his sun. 

Far too long did he sit in the shade; the cheeks of the peni- 
tent of the spirit became pale; he almost starved on his expec- 

Contempt is still in his eye, and loathing hideth in his 
mouth. To be sure, he now resteth, but he hath not yet taken 
rest in the sunshine. 

As the ox ought he to do; and his happiness should smell of 
the earth, and not of contempt for the earth. 

As a white ox would I like to see him, which, snorting and 
lowing, walketh before the plough-share: and his lowing 
should also laud all that is earthly! 

Dark is still his countenance; the shadow of his hand danceth 
upon it. Overshadowed is still the sense of his eye. 



His deed itself is still the shadow upon him: his doing 
obsoireth the doer. Not yet hath he overcome his deed. 

To be sure, I love in him the shoulders of the ox: but now 
do I want to see also the eye of the angel. 

Also his hero-will hath he still to xmlearn: an exalted one 
shall he be, and not only a sublime one; — ^the etier itself 
should raise him, the will-less one! 

He hath subdued monsters, he hath solved enigmas. But 
he should also redeem his monsters and enigmas; into heavenly 
children should he transform them. 

As yet hath his knowledge not learned to smile, and to be 
without jealousy; as yet hath his gushing passion not become 
calm in beauty. 

Verily, not in satiety shall his longing cease and disappear, 
but in beauty! Gracefulness belongeth to the munificence of 
the magnanimous. 

His arm across his head: thus should the hero repose; thus 
should he also surmount his repose. 

But precisely to the hero is beauty the hardest thing of all. 
Unattainable is beauty by all ardent wills. 

A little more, a little less: precisely this is much here, it is 
the most here. 

To stand with relaxed muscles and with unharnessed will: 
that is the hardest for all of you, ye sublime ones! 

When power becometh gracious and descendeth into the 
visible — I call such condescension, beauty. 

And from no one do I want beauty so much as from thee, 
thou powerful one: let thy goodness be thy last self -conquest. 

All evil do I accredit to thee: therefore do I desire of thee the 

Verily, I have often laughed at the weaklings, who think 
themselves good because they have crippled paws! 



Ite virtue of the pillar shalt thou strive after: more beauti- 
ful doth it ever become, and more graceful — but internally 
harder and more sustaining — the higher it risefh. 

Yea, thou sublime one, one day shalt thou also be beautiful, 
and hold up the mirror to thine own beauty. 

Then will thy soul thrill with divine desires; and there will 
be adoration even in thy vanity! 

For this is the secret of the soul: when the hero hath aban- 
doned it, then only approacheth it in dreams — ^the super- 
hero. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

j6. The Land of Culture 

Too far did I fly into the future: a horror seized upon me. 

And when I looked around me, lo! there time was my sole 

Then did I fly badcwards, homewards — ^and always faster. 
Thus did I come unto you: ye present-day men, and into the 
land of culture. 

For the first time brought I an eye to see you, and good de- 
sire: verily, with longing in my heart did I come. 

But how did it turn out with me? Although so alarmed — I 
had yet to laugh! Never did mine eye see anything so motley- 

I laughed and laughed, while my foot still trembled, and 
my heart as well. “Here forsooth, is the home of all the paint- 
pots,” — said I. 


With fifty patches painted on faces and limbs — ^so sat ye 
there to mine astonishment, ye present-day men! 

And with fifty mirrors around you, which flattered your play 
of colours, and repeated it! 

Verily, ye could wear no better masks, ye present-day men, 
than your own faces! Who could — recognise you! 

Written all over with the characters of the past, and these 
characters also pencilled over with new characters — ^thus have 
ye concealed yourselves well from all decipherers! 

And though one be a trier of the reins, who still believeth 
that ye have reins! Out of colours ye seem to be baked, and out 
of glued scraps. 

All times and peoples gaze divers-coloured out of your veils; 
all customs and beliefs speak divers-coloured out of your ges- 

He who would strip you of veils and wrappers, and paints 
and gestures, would just have enough left to scare the crows. 

Verily, I myself am the scared crow that once saw you naked, 
and without paint; and I flew away when the skeleton ogled at 

Rather would I be a day-labourer in the nether-world, and 
among the shades of the by-gone! — ^Fatter and fuller than ye, 
are forsooth the nether-worldlings! 

This, yea this, is bitterness to my bowels, that I can neidier 
endure you naked nor clothed, ye present-day men! 

All that is unhomelike in the future, and whatever maketh 
strayed birds shiver, is verily more homelike and familiar 
your ‘'reality.’* 

For thus speak ye: “Real are we wholly, and without faith 
and superstition”: thus do ye plume yourselves — alas! even 
without plumes! 

Indeed, how would ye be able to believe, ye divers-coloured 



ones ! — je who are pictures of all that hath ever been believed! 

Perambulating refutations are ye, of belief itself, and a dis- 
location of all thought. Untrustworthy ones: thus do I call you, 
ye real ones! 

All periods prate against one another in your spirits; and 
the dreams and pratings of all periods were even realer than 
your awakeness! 

Unfruitful are ye: therefore do ye lack belief. But he who 
had to create, had always his presaging dreams and astral 
premonitions — and believed in believing! — 

Half -open doors are ye, at which grave-diggers wait. And 
this is your reality: '^Everything deserveth to perish.” 

Alas, how ye stand there before me, ye unfruitful ones; how 
lean your ribs! And many of you surely have had knowledge 

Many a one hath said: "There hath surely a God filched 
something from me secretly whilst I slept? Verily, enough to 
make a girl for himself therefrom! 

"Amazing is the poverty of my ribs!” thus hath spoken many 
a present-day man. 

Yea, ye are laughable unto me, ye present-day men! And 
especially when ye marvel at yourselves! 

And woe unto me if I could not laugh at your marvelling, 
and had to swallow all that is repugnant in your platters! 

As it is, however, I will make lighter of you, since I have to 
carry what is heavy; and what matter if beetles and May-bugs 
also alight on my load! 

Verily, it shall not on that account become heavier to me! 
And not from you, ye present-day men, shall my great weari- 
ness arise. — 

Ah, whither shall I now ascend with my longing! From all 
mountains do I look out for fatherlands and motherlands. 


But a home have I found nowhere: unsettled am I in all 
cities, and decamping at all gates. 

Alien to me, and a mockery, are the present-day men, to 
whom of late my heart impelled me; and exiled am I from 
fatherlands and motherlands. 

Thus do I love only my children's landj the undiscovered in 
the remotest sea: for it do I bid my sails search and search. 

Unto my children will I make amends for being the child of 
my fathers : and unto all the future — ^for this present-day! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

^ 7 . Immaculate Perception 

When yester-eve the moon arose, then did I fanq?’ it about to 
bear a svm: so broad and teenaing did it lie on the horizon. 

But it was a liar with its pregnancy; and sooner will I believe 
in the man in the moon than in die woman. 

To be sure, little of a man is he also, that timid night- 
reveller. Verily, with a bad conscience doth he stalk over the 

For he is covetous and jealous, the monk in the moon; 
covetous of the earth, and all the joys of lovers. 

Nay, I like him not, that tom-cat on the roofs! Hateful unto 
me are all that slink around half -closed windows! 

Piously and silently doth he stalk along on the star-carpets: 
— but I like no light-treading human feet, on which not even 
a spur jingleth. ■ 

Every honest one’s step speaketh; the cat however, stealeth 



along over the ground. Lo! cat-like doth the moon come along, 
and dishonestly. — 

This parable speak I unto you sentimental dissemblers, unto 
you, the "pure discemers!'* You do I call — covetous ones! 

Also ye love the earth, and the earthly: I have divined you 
'Vi^elll — ^but shame is in your love, and a bad conscience — ^ye are 
like the moon! 

To despise the earthly hath your spirit been persuaded, but 
not your bowels: these, however, are the strongest in you! 

And now is your spirit ashamed to be at the service of your 
bowels, and goeth in by-ways and lying ways to escape its own 

"That would be the highest thing for me’’ — ^so saith your 
lying spirit unto itself — "to gaze upon life without desire, and 
not like the dog, with hanging-out tongue: 

To be happy in gazing: with dead will, free from the grip 
and greed of selfishness — cold and ashy-grey all over, but with 
intoxicated moon-eyes! 

That would be the dearest thing to me” — ^thus doth the se- 
duced one seduce himself, — "to love the earth as the moon 
loveth it, and with the eye only to feel its beauty. 

And this do I call immaculate perception of all things: to 
want nothing else from them, but to be allowed to lie before 
them as a mirror with a hundred facets.” — 

Oh, ye sentimental dissemblers, ye covetous ones! Ye lack 
innocence in your desire: and now do ye defame desiring on 
that account! 

Verily, not as creators, as procreators, or as jubilators do ye 
love the earth! 

Where is innocence? Where there is will to procreation. 
And he who seeketh to create beyond himself, hath for me the 
purest will. 


Where is beauty? Where I must will with my whole Will; 
where I will love and perish, that an image may not remain 
merely an image. 

Loving and perishing: these have rhymed from eternity. 
Will to love: that is to be ready also for death. Thus do I speak 
unto you cowards I 

But now doth your emasculated ogling profess to be '*con- 
templation!” And that which can be examined with cowardly 
eyes is to be christened ‘^beautiful!” Oh, ye violators of noble 

But it shall be your curse, ye immaculate ones, ye pure dis- 
cerners, that ye shall never bring forth, even though ye lie 
broad and teeming on the horixon! 

Verily, ye fill your mouth with noble words: and we are to 
believe that your heart overfloweth, ye cozeners? 

But my words are poor, contemptible, stammering words: 
gladly do I pick up what falleth from the table at your repasts. 

Yet still can I say therewith the tmth — ^to dissemblers! Yea, 
my fish-bones, shells, and prickly leaves shall — ^tickle the noses 
of dissemblers! 

Bad air is always about you and your repasts: your lascivious 
thoughts, your lies, and secrets are indeed in the air! 

Dare only to believe in yourselves — in yourselves and in 
your inward parts! He who doth not believe in himself always 

A God’s mask have ye hung in front of you, ye ‘'pure ones” : 
into a God’s mask hath your execrable coiling snake crawled. 

Verily ye deceive, ye “contemplative ones!” Even Zarathus- 
tra was once the dupe of your godlike exterior; he did not 
divine the serpent’s coil with which it was stuffed. 

A God’s soul, I once thought I saw playing in your games, 



ye pure discemers! No better arts did I once dream of than your 

Serpents' filth and evil odour, the distance concealed from 
me: and that a lizard’s craft prowled thereabouts lasciviously. 

But I came nigh unto you: then came to me the day, — ^and 
now cometh it to you, — at an end is the moon's love affair! 

See there! Surprised and pale doth it stand — ^before the 
rosy dawn! 

For already she cometh, the glowing one , — her love to the 
earth cometh! Innocence, and creative desire, is ail solar love! 

See there, how she cometh impatiently over the sea! Do ye 
not feel the thirst and the hot breath of her love.^ 

At the sea would she suck, and drink its depths to her height: 
now riseth the desire of the sea with its thousand breasts. 

Kissed and sucked would it be by the thirst of the sun; 
vapour would it become, and height, and path of light, and 
light itself! 

Verily, like the sun do I love life, and all deep seas. 

And this meaneth to me knowledge: all that is deep shall 
ascend — ^to my height! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

^8. Scholars 

When I lay asleep, thea did a sheep eat at the ivy-wreath on 
my head , — it ate, and said thereby: "Zarathustra is no longer a 

It said this, and went away clumsily and proudly. A child 
told it to me. 


I like to lie here where the children play, beside the mined 
wall, among thistles and red poppies. 

A scholar am I still to the children, and also to the thistles 
?Lnd red poppies. Innocent are they, even in their wickedness. 

But to the sheep I am no longer a scholar: so willeth my lot 
—blessings upon it! 

For this is the tmth: I have departed from the house of 
the scholars, and the door have I also slammed behind me. 

Too long did my soul sit hxmgry at their table: not like them 
have I got the knack of investigating, as the knack of nut- 

Freedom do I love, and the air over fresh soil; rather would 
I sleep on ox-skins than on their honours and dignities. 

I am too hot and scorched with mine own thought: often is 
it ready to take away my breath. Then have I to go into the 
open air, and away from all dusty rooms. 

But they sit cool in the cool shade: they want in everything 
to be merely spectators, and they avoid sitting where the sun 
burneth on the steps. 

Like those who stand in the street and gape at the passers-by: 
thus do they also wait, and gape at the thoughts which others 
have thought. 

Should one lay hold of them, then do they raise a dust like 
flour-sacks, and involuntarily: but who would divine that their 
dust came from corn, and from the yellow delight of the sum- 
mer fields? 

When they give themselves out as wise, then do their petty 
sayings and tmths chill me: in their wisdom there is often an 
odour as if it came from the swamp; and verily, I have even 
heard the frog croak in it! 

Clever are they — they have dexterous fingers ; what doth my 



simplicity pretend to beside their multiplicity! All threading 
and knitting and weaving do their fingers understand: thus do 
they make the hose of the spirit! 

Good clockworks are they: only be careful to wind them up 
properly! Then do they indicate the hour without mistake, and 
make a modest noise thereby. 

Like millstones do they work, and like pestles: throw only 
seed-corn imto them! — ^they know well how to grind com 
small, and make white dust out of it. 

They keep a sharp eye on one another, and do not trust each 
other the best Ingenious in little artifices, they wait for those 
whose knowledge walketh on lame feet, — ^like spiders do they 

I saw them always prepare their poison with precaution; 
and always did they put glass gloves on their fingers in doing 

They also know how to play with false dice; and so eagerly 
did I find them playing, that they perspired thereby. 

We are alien to each other, and their virtues are even more 
repugnant to my taste than their falsehoods and false dice. 

And when I lived with them, then did I live above them. 
Therefore did they take a dislike to me. 

They want to hear nothing of any one walking above their 
heads; and so they put wood and earth and rubbish betwixt me 
and their heads. 

Thus did they deafen the sound of my tread: and least have 
I hitherto been heard by the most learned. 

All mankind's faults and weaknesses did they put betwixt 
themselves and me: — ^they call it "false* ceiling" in their 

But nevertheless I walk with my thoughts above their heads; 


and even should I walk on mine own errors, still would I be 
above them and their heads. 

For men are not equal: so speaketh justice. And what I will, 
they may not will ! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 


'*SiNCE I have known the body better’' — ^said Zarathustra to 
one of his disciples — **the spirit hath only been to me sym- 
bolically spirit; and all the 'imperishable' — ^that is also but a 

"So have I heard thee say once before," answered the dis- 
ciple, "and then thou addedst; 'But the poets lie too much.' 
Why didst thou say that the poets lie too much?" 

"Why?" said Zarathustra. "Thou askest why? I do not 
belong to those who may be asked after their Why. 

Is my experience but of yesterday? It is long ago that I ex- 
perienced the reasons for mine opinions. 

Should I not have to be a cask of memory, if I also wanted to 
have my reasons with me? 

It is already too much for me even to retain mine opinions; 
and many a bird flieth away. 

And sometimes, also, do I find a fugitive creature in my 
dovecote, which is alien to me, and trembleth when I lay my 
hand upon it. 

But what did Zarathustra once say unto thee? That the poets 
lie too much? — ^But Zarathustra also is a poet. 



Believest thou that he there spake the truth? Why dost thou 
believe it?*’ 

The disciple answered: *T believe in Zarathustra/* But 
Zarathustra shook his head and smiled. — 

Belief doth not sanctify me, said he, least of all the belief 
in myself. 

But granting that some one did say in all seriousness that the 
poets lie too much : he was right — we do lie too much. 

We also know too little, and are bad learners: so we are 
obliged to lie. 

And which of us poets hath not adulterated his wine? Many 
a poisonous hotchpotch hath evolved in our cellars: many an 
indescribable thing hath there been done. 

And because we know little, therefore are we pleased from 
the heart with the poor in spirit, especially when ihey are 
young women! 

And even of those things are we desirous, which old women 
tell one another in the evening. This do we call the eternally 
feminine in us. 

And as if there were a special secret access to knowledge, 
which choketh up for those who learn anytibing, so do wf 
believe in the people and in their ' Visdom.” 

This, however, do all poets believe: that whoever pricketh 
up his ears when lying in the grass or on lonely slopes, learneth 
something of the things that are betwixt heaven and earth. 

And if there come unto them tender emotions, then do the 
poets always think that nature herself is in love with them: 

And that she stealeth to their ear to whisper secrets into it, 
and amorous flatteries: of this do they plume and pride them- 
selves, before all mortals! 

Ah, there are so many things betwixt heaven and earth of 
which only the poets have dreamed! 


And especially above the heavens: for all gods are poet- 
symbolisations, poet-sophistications! 

Verily, ever are we drawn aloft — ^that is, to the realm of the 
clouds: on these do we set our gaudy puppets, and then call 
them gods and Supermen: — 

Are not they light enough for those chairs! — ^all these gods 
and Supermen? — 

Ah, how I am weary of all the inadequate that is insisted on 
as actual! Ah, how I am weary of the poets! 

When Zarathustra so spake, his disciple resented it, but 
was silent. And Zarathustra also was silent; and his eye 
directed itself inwardly, as if it gazed into the far distance. At 
last he sighed and drew breath. — 

I am of today and heretofore, said he thereupon; but some- 
thing is in me that is of the morrow, and the day following, 
and the hereafter. 

I became weary of the poets, of the old and of the new: 
superficial are they all unto me, and shallow seas. 

They did not think suflidently into the depth; therefore their 
feeling did not reach to the bottom. 

Some sensation of voluptuousness and some sensation of 
tedium: these have as yet been their best contemplation. 

Ghost-breathing and ghost-whisking, seemeth to me all the 
jingle-jangling of their harps; what have they known hitherto 
of the fervour of tones! — 

They are also not pure enough for me: they all muddle their 
water that it may seem deep. 

And fain would they thereby prove themselves reconcilers: 
but mediaries and mixers are they unto me, and half-and-half, 
and impure! — 

Ah, I cast indeed my net into their sea, and meant to catch 



good fish; but always did I draw up the head of some ancient 

Thus did the sea give a stone to the hungry one. And they 
themselves may well originate from the sea. 

Certainly, one findeth pearls in them: thereby they are the 
more like hard molluscs. And instead of a soul, I have often 
found in them salt slime. 

They have learned from the sea also its vanity: is not the 
sea the peacock of peacocks? 

Even before the ugliest of all buffaloes doth it spread out 
its tail; never doth it tire of its lace-fan of silver and silk. 

Disdainfully doth the buffalo glance thereat, nigh to the 
sand with its soul, nigher still to the thicket, nighest, however, 
to the swamp. 

What is beauty and sea and peacock-splendour to it! This 
parable I speak unto the poets. 

Verily, their spirit itself is the peacock of peacocks, and a 
sea of vanity! 

Spectators seeketh the spirit of the poet — ^should they even 
be buffaloes! — 

But of this spirit became I weary; and I see the time coming 
when it will become weary of itself. 

Yea, changed have I seen the poets, and their glance turned 
towards themselves. 

Penitents of the spirit have I seen appearing; they grew out 
of the poets. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



^o. Great Events 

There is an isle in the sea — ^not far from the Happy Isles of 
Zarathustra — on which a volcano ever smoketh; of which isle 
the people, and especially the old women amongst them, say 
that it is placed as a rock before the gate of the nether-world; 
but that through the volcano itself the narrow way leadeth 
downwards which conducteth to this gate. 

Now about the time that Zarathustra sojourned on the 
Happy Isles, it happened that a ship anchored at the isle on 
which standeth the smoking mountain, and the crew went 
ashore to shoot rabbits. About the noontide hour, however, 
when the captain and his men were together again, they saw 
suddenly a man coming towards them through the air, and a 
voice said distinctly: 'It is time! It is the highest time!'* But 
when the figure was nearest to them ( it flew past quickly, how- 
ever, like a shadow, in the direction of the volcano) , then did 
they recognise with the greatest surprise that it was Zarathus- 
tra; for they had all seen him before except the captain himself, 
and they loved him as the people love: in such wise that love 
and awe were combined in equal degree. 

"Behold!" said the old helmsman, "there goeth Zarathustra 
to hell!" 

About the same time that these sailors landed on the fire- 
isle, there was a rumour that Zarathustra had disappeared; and 
when his friends were asked about it, they said that he had 
gone on board a ship by night, without saying whither he was 

Thus there arose some uneasiness. After three days, how- 
ever, there came the story of the ship's aew in addition to this 



uneasiness — ^and then did all the people say that the devil had 
taken Zarathustra. His disciples laughed, sure enough, at this 
talk; and one of them said even: "Sooner would I believe that 
Zarathustra hath taken the devil.” But at the bottom of their 
hearts they were all full of anxiety and longing: so their joy 
was great when on the fifth day Zarathustra appeared amongst 

And this is the account of Zarathustra’s interview with the 

The earth, said he, hath a skin; and this skin hath diseases. 
One of these diseases, for example, is called "man.” 

And another of these diseases is called "the fire-dog”: con- 
cerning him men have greatly deceived themselves, and let 
themselves be deceived. 

To fathom this mystery did I go o'er the sea; and I have 
seen the truth naked, verily! barefooted up to the neck. 

Now do I know how it is concerning the fire-dog; and 
likewise concerning all the spouting and subversive devils, of 
which not only old women are afraid. 

"Up with thee, fire-dog, out of thy depth!” cried I, "and 
confess how deep that depth is! Whence cometh that which 
thou snortest up? 

Thou drinkest copiously at the sea: that doth thine embit- 
tered eloquence betray! In sooth, for a dog of the depth, thou 
takest thy nourishment too much from the surface! 

At the most, I regard thee as the ventriloquist of the earth: 
and ever, when I have heard subversive and spouting devils 
speak, I have found them like thee: embittered, mendacious, 
and shallow. 

Ye imderstand how to roar and obscure with ashes! Ye are 
the best braggarts, and have sufficiently learned the art of 
making dregs boil. 


Where ye are, there must always be dregs at hand, and much 
that is spongy, hollow, and compressed: it wanteth to have 

Treedom* ye all roar most eagerly: but I have unlearned the 
belief in ‘great events,’ when there is much roaring and smoke 
about them. 

And believe me, friend Hullabaloo! The greatest events — 
are not our noisiest, but our stillest hours. 

Not around the inventors of new noise, but around the in- 
ventors of new values, doth the world revolve; inaudibly it 

And just own to it! Little had ever taken place when thy 
noise and smoke passed away. What, if a city did become a 
mummy, and a statue lay in the mud! 

And this do I say also to the o’erthrowers of statues: It is 
certainly the greatest folly to throw salt into the sea, and statues 
into the mud. 

In the mud of your contempt lay the statue: but it is just its 
law, that out of contempt, its life and living beauty grow again! 

With diviner features doth it now arise, seducing by its 
suffering; and verily! it will yet thank you for o’erthrowing it, 
ye subverters! 

This counsel, however, do I counsel to kings and churches, 
and to all that is weak with age or virtue — ^let yourselves be 
o’erthrown! That ye may again come to life, and that virtue — 
may come to you! — ” 

Thus spake I before the fire-dog: then did he interrupt me 
sullenly, and asked: “Qiurch.^ What is that?” 

“Church?” answered I, “that is a kind of state, and indeed 
the most mendacious. But remain quiet, thou dissembling dog! 
Thou surely knowest thine own species best! 

Like thyself the state is a dissembling dog; like thee doth 



it like to speak with smoke and roaring — ^to make believe, like 
thee, that it speaketh out of the heart of things. 

For it seeketh by all means to be the most important crea- 
ture on earth, the state; and people think it so.” 

When I had said this, the fire-dog acted as if mad with envy. 
"What!” cried he, "the most important creature on earth? And 
people think it so?” And so much vapour and terrible voices 
came out of his throat, that I thought he would choke with 
vexation and envy. 

At last he became calmer and his panting subsided; as soon, 
however, as he was quiet, I said laughingly: 

"Thou art angry, fire-dog: so I am in the right about thee! 

And that I may also maintain the right, hear the story of 
another fire-dog; he speaketh actually out of the*heart of the 

Gold doth his breath exhale, and golden rain: so doth his 
heart desire. What are ashes and smoke and hot dregs to him! 

Laughter flitteth from him like a variegated cloud; adverse is 
he to thy gargling and spewing and grips in the bowels! 

The gold, however, and the laughter — ^these doth he take 
out of the heart of the earth: for, that thou mayst know it, — 
the heart of the earth is of gold.” 

When the fire-dog heard this, he could no longer endure to 
listen to me. Abashed did he draw in his tail, said "bow-wow!” 
in a cowed voice, and crept down into his cave. — 

Thus told Zarathustra. His disciples, however, hardly 
listened to him: so great was their eagerness to tell htm about 
the sailors, the rabbits, and the flying man. 

"What am I to think of it!” said Zarathustra. “Am I indeed 
a ghost? 

But it may have been my shadow. Ye have surely heard some- 
thing of the Wanderer and his Shadow? 


One thing, however, is certain: I must keep a tighter hold 
of it; otherwise it will spoil my reputation.” 

And once more Zarathustra shook his head and wondered. 
"What am I to think of it!” said he once more. 

"Why did the ghost cry: ’It is time! It is the highest time!’ 
For what is it then — ^the highest time?” — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

41. The Soothsayer 

” — ^And I saw a great sadness come over manldnd. The best 
turned weary of their works. 

A doctrine appeared, a faith ran beside it: 'All is empty, all 
is alike, all hath been!' 

And from all hills there re-echoed: 'All is empty, all is 
alike, all hath been!' 

To be sure we have harvested: but why have all our fruits 
become rotten and brown? What was it fell last night from 
the evil moon? 

In vain was all our labour, poison hath our wine become, the 
evil eye hath singed yellow our fields and hearts. 

Arid have we all become; and fire falling upon us, then do 
we turn dust like ashes: — ^yea, the fire itself have we made 

All our fountains have dried up, even the sea hath receded. 
All the groxmd trieth to gape, but the depth will not swallow! 

'Alas! where is there still a sea in which one could be 
drowned?’ so soundeth our plaint — across shallow swamps. 



Verily, even, for dying have we become too weary; now do 
we keep awake and live on — ^in sepulchres.” 

Thus did Zarathustra hear a soothsayer speak; and the fore- 
boding touched his heart and transformed him. Sorrowfully 
did he go about and wearily; and he became like unto those tf 
whom the soothsayer had spoken. — 

Verily, said he unto his disciples, a little while, and there 
cometh the long twilight. Alas, how shall I preserve my light 
through it! 

That it may not smother in this sorrowfulness! To remoter 
worlds shall it be a light, and also to remotest nights! 

Thus did Zarathustra go about grieved in his heart, and for 
three days he did not take any meat or drink: he had no rest, 
and lost his speech. At last it came to pass that he fell into a 
deep sleep. His disciples, however, sat around him in long 
night-watches, and waited anxiously to see if he would awake, 
and speak again, and recover from his affliction. 

And this is the discourse that Zarathustra spake when he 
awoke; his voice, however, came unto his disciples as from 

Hear, I pray you, the dream that I dreamed, my friends, and 
help me to divine its meaning! 

A riddle is it still unto me, this dream; the meaning is hidden 
in it and encaged, and doth not yet fly above it on free pinions. 

All life had I renounced, so I dreamed. Night-watchman 
and grave-guardian had I become, aloft, in the lone mountain- 
fortress of Death. 

There did I guard his coffins: full stood the musty vaults of 
tiiose trophies of victory. Out of glass coffins did vancjcfished 
life gaze upon me. 

The odour of dust-covered eternities did I breathe: sultry 


and dust-coveted lay my soul. And who could have aired his 
soul there! 

Brightness of midnight was ever around me; lonesomeness 
cowered beside her; and as a third, death-rattle stillness, the 
worst of my female friends. 

Keys did I cany, the rustiest of all keys; and I knew how to 
open with them the most creaking of all ^tes. 

Like a bitterly angry croaking ran the sound through the 
long corridors when the leaves of the gate opened: ungra- 
ciously did this bird cry, unwillingly was it awakened. 

But more frightful even, and more heart-strangling was it, 
when it again became silent and still all around, and I alone 
sat in that malignant silence. 

Thus did time pass with me, and slip by, if time there still 
was: what do I know thereof! But at last there happened that 
whidh awoke me. 

Thrice did there peal peals at the gate like thxmders, thrice 
did the vaults resound and howl again: then did I go to the 

Alpa! cried I, who carrieth his ashes unto the mountain? 
Alpa! Alpa! who carrieth his ashes imto the mountain? 

And I pressed the key, and pulled at the gate, and exerted 
myself. But not a finger’ s-breadth was it yet open: 

Then did a roaring wind tear the folds apart: whistling, 
whizzing, and piercing, it threw \mto me a blade coffin. 

And in the roaring and whistling and whizzing, the coffin 
burst open, and spouted out a thousand peals of laughter. 

And a thousand caricatures of children, angels, owls, fools, 
and child-sized butterflies laughed and mocked, and roared at 

Fearfully was I terrified thereby: it prostrated me. And I 
cried with horror as I ne’er cried before. 



But mine own crying awoke me: — ^and I came to myself. 

Thus did Zarathustra relate his dream, and then was silent: 
for as yet he knew not the interpretation thereof. But the dis- 
ciple whom he loved most arose quickly, seized Zarathustra’s 
hand, and said: 

"Thy life itself interpreteth unto us this dream, O Zara- 

Art thou not thyself the wind with shrill whistling, which 
burstedi open the gates of the fortress of Death? 

Art thou not thyself the coffin full of many-hued malices and 
angel-caricatures of life? 

Verily, like a thousand peals of children’s laughter cometh 
Zarathustra into all sepulchres, laughing at those night-watch- 
men and grave-guardians, and whoever else rattleth with sinis- 
ter k^s. 

With thy laughter wilt thou frighten and prostrate them: 
fainting and recovering wilt thou demonstrate thy power over 

And when the long twilight com^ and the mortal weari- 
ness, even then wilt thou not disappear from our firmament, 
thou advocate of life! 

New stars hast thou made us see, and new nocturnal glories: 
verily, laughter itself hast thou spread out over us like a many- 
hued canopy. 

Now will children’s laughter ever from coffins flow; now 
will a strong wind ever come victoriously unto all mortal weari- 
ness : of this thou art thyself the pledge and the prophet! 

Verily, they themselves didst thou dream, thine enemies; 
that was thy sorest dream. 

But as thou awokest from them and earnest to thyself, so 
shall they awaken from themselves — ^and come unto thee!” 

Thus spake the disciple; and all the others then thrcMiged 


around Zarathustra, grasped him by the hands, and tried to 
persuade him to leave his bed and his sadness, and return unto 
them. Zarathustra, however, sat upright on his couch, with an 
absent look. Like one returning from long foreign sojourn did 
he look on his disciples, and examined their features; but still 
he knew them not. When, however, they raised him, and set 
him upon his feet, behold, all on a sudden his eye changed; he 
understood everything that had happened, stroked his beard, 
and said with a strong voice: 

''Well! this hath just its time; but see to it, my disciples, 
that we have a good repast, and without delay! Thus do I mean 
to make amends for bad dreams! 

The soothsayer, however, shall eat and drink at my side: 
and verily, I will yet show him a sea in which he can drown 

Thus spake Zarathustra. Then did he gaze long into the 
face of the disciple who had been the dream-interpreter, and 
shook his head. — 

42, Redemption 

WjEjEN Zarathustra went one day over the great bridge, then 
did the cripples and beggars surround him, and a hunchback 
spake thus unto him: 

"Bdiold, Zarathustra! Even the people learn from thee, and 
acquire faith in thy teaching: but for them to believe fully in 
fliee, one thing is still needful — ^thou must first of all convince 
us CTipples! Here hast thou now a fine selection, and verily, an 



opportuoity with more than one forelock! The blind canst thnn 
heal, and make the lame run; and from him who hath ioo 
much behind, couldst thou well, also, take away a little;— 
that, I think, would be the right method to make the cripples 
believe in Zarathustra!’* 

Zarathustra, however, answered thus unto him who so 
spake: When one taketh his hump from the hunchback, then 
doth one take from him his spirit — so do the people teach. 
And when one giveth the blind man eyes, then doth he see too 
many bad things on the earth: so that he curseth him who 
healed him. He, however, who maketh the lame man run, Iti- 
flicteth upon him the greatest injury; for hardly can he run, 
when his vices mn away with him — ^so do the people teach 
concerning cripples. And why should not Zarathustra also 
learn from the people, when the people learn from Zara- 

It is, however, the smallest thing unto me since I have been 
amongst men, to see one person lacking an eye, another an 
ear, and a third a leg, and that others have lost the tongue, or 
the nose, or the head. 

I see and have seen worse things, and divers things so 
hideous, that I should neither like to speak of all matters, nor 
even keep silent about some of them: namely, men who lack 
everything, except that they have too much of one thing — ^men 
who are nothing more than a big eye, or a big mouth, or a big 
belly, or something else big, — ^reversed cripples, I caE such 

And when I came out of my solitude, and for the first time 
passed over this bridge, then I could not trust mine eyes, bnt 
looked again and again, and said at last: ‘That is an earl An 
ear as big as a man!” I looked still more attentively — ^and'ac- 



tually there did move under the ear something that was pitiably 
small and poor and slim. And in truth this immense ear was 
perched on a small thin stalk — ^the stalk, however, was a man! 
A person putting a glass to his eyes, could even recognise fur- 
ther a small envious countenance, and also that a bloated 
soullet dangled at the stalk. The people told me, however, that 
the big ear was not only a man, but a great man, a genius. But 
I never believed in the people when they spake of great men 
— and I hold to my belief that it was a reversed cripple, who 
had too little of everything, and too much of one thing. 

When Zarathustra had spoken thus unto the hunchback, and 
xmto those of whom the hunchback was the mouthpiece and 
advocate, then did he turn to his disciples in profound dejec- 
tion, and said: 

Verily, my friends, I walk amongst men as amongst the 
fragments and limbs of human beings! 

This is the terrible thing to mine eye, that I find man 
broken up, and scattered about, as on a battle- and butcher- 

And when mine eye fleeth from the present to the bygone, it 
findeth ever the same: fragments and limbs and fearful chances 
— ^butnomen! 

The present and the bygone upon earth — ah! my friends — 
that is my most unbearable trouble; and I should not know how 
to live, if I were not a seer of what is to come. 

A seer, a purposer, a creator, a future itself, and a bridge to 
the future — ^and alas! also as it were a cripple on this bridge: 
all that is Zarathustra. 

And ye also asked yourselves often: "Who is Zarathustra 
to us? What shall he be called by us?*' And like me, did ye 
give yourselves questions for answers. 

Is he a promiser? Or a fulfiller? A conqueror? Or an in- 



heritor? A harvest? Or a ploughshare? A physician? Or a 
healed one? 

Is he a poet? Or a genuine one? An emancipator? Or a sub- 
jugator? A good one? Or an evil one? 

I walk amongst men as the fragments of the future: that 
future which I contemplate. 

And it is all my poetisation and aspiration to compose and 
collect into unity what is fragment and riddle and featful 

And how could I endure to be a man, if man were not also 
the composer, and riddle-reader, and redeemer of chance! 

To redeem what is past, and to transform every *lt was'* 
into *'Thus would I have it!” — ^that only do I call redemption! 

Will — ^so is the emancipator and joy-bringer called: thus 
have I taught you, my friends! But now learn this likewise: 
the Will itself is still a prisoner. 

Willing emancipateth: but what is that called which still 
putteth the emancipator in chains? 

”It was”: thus is the Will’s teeth-gnashing and lonesomest 
tribulation called. Impotent towards what hath been done — ^it 
is a malicious spectator of all that is past. 

Not backward can the Will will; that it cannot break time 
and time’s desire — ^that is the Will’s lonesomest tribulation. 

Willing emancipateth: what doth Willing itself devise in 
order to get free from its tribulation and mock at its prison? 

Ah, a fool becometh every prisoner! Foolishly delivered! 
itself also the imprisoned Will. 

That time doA not run backward — ^that is its animosity: 
'*That which was” : so is the stone which it cannot roll called. 

And thus doth it roll stones out of animosity and ill-humour, 
and taketh revenge on whatever doth not, like it, feel rage and 


Thus did the Will, the emancipator, become a torturer; and 
on all that is capable of suffering it taketh revenge, because it 
cannot go backward. 

This, yea, this alone is revenge itself : the Will’s antipathy to 
time, and its **It was.” 

Verily, a great folly dwelleth in our Will; and it became a 
curse unto all humanity, that this folly acquired spirit! 

The spirit of revenge: my friends, that hath hitherto been 
man’s best contemplation; and where there was suffering, it 
was claimed there was always penalty. 

''Penalty,” so calleth itself revenge. With a lying word it 
feigneth a good conscience. 

And because in the wilier himself there is suffering, because 
he cannot wiU backwards — ^thus was Willing itself, and all 
life, claimed — to be penalty! 

And then did cloud after cloud roll over the spirit, until at 
last madness preached: "Everything perisheth, therefore every- 
thing deserveth to perish!” 

"And this itself is justice, the law of time — ^that he must 
devour his children:” thus did madness preach. 

"Morally are things ordered according to justice and 
penalty. Oh, where is there deliverance from the flux of things 
and from the 'existence’ of penalty?” Thus did madness preach. 

"Can there be deliverance when there is eternal justice? 
Alas, unrollable is the stone, 'It was*: eternal must also be all 
penalties!” Thus did madness preach. 

"No deed can be annihilated: how could it be undone by 
the penalty! This, this is what is eternal in the 'existence* of 
penalty, that existence also must be eternally recurring deed 
and guilt! 

Unless the Will should at last deliver itself, and Willing 



become non-Willing — but ye know, my brethren, this fabu- 
lous song of madness! 

Away from those fabulous songs did I lead you when I 
taught you : * 'The Will is a creator.” 

All "It was” is a fragment, a riddle, a fearful chance — ^until 
the creating Will saith thereto: "But thus would I have it.” — 

Until the creating Will saith thereto: "But thus do I will it! 
Thus shall I will it!” 

But did it ever speak thus? And when doth this take place? 
Hath the Will been unharnessed from its own folly? 

Hath the Will become its own deliverer and joy-bringer? 
Hath it unlearned the spirit of revenge and all teeth-gnashing? 

And who hath taught it reconciliation with time, and some- 
thing higher than all reconciliation? 

Something higher than all reconciliation must the Will will 
which is the Will to Power — : but how doth that take place? 
Who hath taught it also to will backwards? 

— ^But at this point in his discourse it chanced that Zara- 
thustra suddenly paused, and looked like a person in the great- 
est alarm. With terror in his eyes did he gaze on his disciples; 
his glances pierced as with arrows their thoughts and arrear- 
thoughts. But after a brief space he again laughed, and said 

"It is difficult to live amongst men, because silence is so 
diffi cult — especially for a babbler,” — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. The hunchback, however, had 
listened to the conversation and had covered his face during 
the time; but when he heard Zarathustra laugh, he looked up 
with curiosity, and said slowly: 

"But why doth Zarathustra speak otherwise unto us than 
unto his disciples?” 


Zarathustra answered: "What is there to be wondered at! 
With hunchbacks one may well speak in a hunchbacked way!” 

"Very good,” said the hunchback; "and with pupils one may 
well tell tales out of school. 

But why doth Zarathustra speak otherwise imto his pupils — 
than unto himself?” — 

4^. Manly Prudence 

Not the height, it is the declivity that is terrible! 

The declivity, where the gaze shooteth downwards, and the 
hand graspeth upwards. There doth the heart become giddy 
through its double will. 

Ah, friends, do ye divine also my heart’s double will? 

This, this is my declivity and my danger, that my gaze 
shooteth towards the summit, and my hand would fain clutch 
and lean — on the depth! 

To man clingeth my will; with chains do I bind myself to 
man, because I am pulled upwards to the Superman: for 
thither doth mine other will tend. 

And therefore do I live blindly among men, as if I knew 
them not: that my hand may not entirely lose belief in 

I know not you men: this gloom and consolation is often 
spread around me. 

I sit at the gateway for every rogue, and ask: Who wisheth 
to deceive me? 

This is my first manly prudence, that I allow myself to be 
deceived, so as not to be on my guard against deceivers. 



Ah, if I were on my guard against man, how could man be 
an anchor to my ball! Too easily would I be pulled upwards and 

This providence is over my fate, that I have to be without 

And he who would not languish amongst men, must learn 
to drink out of all glasses; and he who would keep clean 
amongst men, must know how to wash himself even with dirty 

And thus spake I often to myself for consolation; "Courage! 
Cheer up! old heart! An unhappiness hath failed to befall thee: 
enjoy that as thy — ^happiness!" 

This, however, is mine other manly prudence: I am more 
forbearing to the vdn than to the proud. 

Is not wounded vanity the mother of all tragedies? Where, 
however, pride is wounded, there there groweth up something 
better than pride. 

That life may be fair to behold, its game must be well 
played; for that purpose, however, it needeth good actors. 

Good actors have I found all the vain ones: they play, and 
wish people to be fond of beholding them — ^all their spirit is in 
this wish. 

They represent themselves, tiiey invent themselves; in their 
neighbourhood I like to look upon life — ^it cureth of mel- 

Therefore am I forbearing to the vain, because they are the 
physicians of my melancholy, and keep me attached to man 
as to a drama. 

And further, who conceiveth the full depth of the modesty 
of the vain man! I am favourable to him, and sympathetic on 
account of his modesty. 


From you would he learn his belief in himself; he feedeth 
upon your glances, he eateth praise out of your hands. 

Your lies doth he even believe when you lie favourably 
about him: for in its depths sigheth his heart: **What am IT* 

And if that be the true virtue which is unconscious of itself 
— ^well, the vain man is unconscious of his modesty! — 

This is, however, my third manly pmdence: I am not put 
out of conceit with the wicked by your timorousness. 

I am happy to see the marvels the warm sun hatcheth: tigers 
and palms and rattlesnakes. 

Also amongst men there is a beautiful brood of the warm 
sun, and much that is marvellous in the wicked. 

In truth, as your wisest did not seem to me so very wise, so 
found I also human wickedness below the fame of it. 

And oft did I ask with a shake of the head: Why still rattle, 
ye rattlesnakes? 

Verily, there is still a future even for evil! And the warmest 
south is still imdiscovered by man. 

How many things are now called the worst wickedness, 
which are only twelve feet broad and three months long! Some 
day, however, will greater dragons come into the world. 

For that the Superman may not lack his dragon, the super- 
dragon that is worthy of him, there must still much warm sun 
glow on moist virgin forests! 

Out of your wild cats must tigers have evolved, and out of 
your poison-toads, crocodiles: for the good hunter shall have a 
good hunt! 

And verily, ye good and just! In you there is much to be 
laughed at, and especially your fear of what hath hitherto been 
called 'Uedevil!*^ 

So alien are ye in your souls to what is great, that to you the 
Superman would be frightful in his goodness! 



And ye wise and knowing ones, ye would flee from the solar- 
glow of the wisdom in which the Superman joyfully batheth his 

Ye highest men who have come within my ken! this is my 
doubt of you, and my secret laughter: I suspect ye would call 
my Superman — a devil! 

Ah, I became tired of those highest and best ones: from 
their '^height” did I long to be up, out, and away to the Super- 

A horror came over me when I saw those best ones naked: 
then there grew for me the pinions to soar away into distant 

Into more distant futures, into more southern souths than 
ever artist dreamed of : thither, where gods are ashamed of all 

But disguised do I want to see youj ye neighbours and 
fellowmen, and well-attired and vain and estimable, as **the 
good and just;” — 

And disguised will I myself sit amongst you — ^that I may 
mistake you and myself : for that is my last manly prudence. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

44, The Stillest Hour 

What hath happened unto me, my friends? Ye see me 
troubled, driven forth, unwillingly obedient, ready to go- 
alas, to go away from you! 

Yea, once more must Zarathustra retire to his solitude: but 
unj oyously this time doth the bear go back to his cave! 


What hath happened unto me? Who ordereth this? — ^Ah, 
mine angry mistress wisheth it so; she spake unto me. Have I 
ever named her name to you? 

Yesterday towards evening there spake unto me my stillest 
hour: diat is the name of my terrible mistress. 

And thus did it happen — for everything must I tell you, 
that your heart may not harden against the suddenly departing 

Do ye know the terror of him who falleth asleep? — 

To the very toes he is terrified, because the ground giveth 
way imderhim, and the dream beginneth. 

This do I speak unto you in parable. Yesterday at the stillest 
hour did the ground give way under me: the dream began. 

The hour-hand moved on, the timepiece of my life drew 
breath — ^never did I hear such stillness around me, so diat my 
heart was terrified. 

Then was there spoken unto me without voice: "Thou 
knowest it, Zarathustra ?" — 

And I cried in terror at this whispering, and the blood left 
my face: but I was silent. 

Then was there once more spoken imto me without voice: 
"Thou knowest it, Zarathustra, but thou dost not speak it!” — 

And at last I answered, like one defiant: "Yea, I know it, 
but I will not speak it!” 

Then was there again spoken imto me without voice : "Thou 
wilt not, Zarathustra? Is this true? Conceal thyself not behind 
thy defiance!” — 

And I wept and trembled like a child, and said: "Ah, I 
would indeed, but how can I do it! Exempt me only from this! 
It is beyond my power!” 

Then was there again spoken unto me without voice: "What 


matter about thyself, Zarathustra! Speak thy word, and suc- 

And I answered: **Ah, is it my word? Who am 1? I await the 
worthier one; I am not worthy even to succumb by it.” 

Then was there again spoken unto me without voice: "What 
matter about thyself? Thou art not yet humble enough for me. 
Humility hath the hardest skin.” — 

And I answered: "What hath not the skin of my humility 
endured! At the foot of my height do I dwell: how high are 
my sunGmits, no one hath yet told me. But well do I know my 

Then was there again spoken imto me without voice: "O 
Zarathustra, he who hath to remove mountains removeth also 
valleys and plains.” — 

And I answered: "As yet hath my word not removed moun- 
tains, and what I have spoken hath not reached man. I went, 
indeed, unto men, but not yet have I attained imto them.” 

Then was there again spoken imto me without voice: "What 
knowest thou thereof! The dew falleth on the grass when the 
night is most silent.” — 

And I answered; "They mocked me when I found and 
walked in mine own path; and certainly did my feet then 

And thus did they speak unto me: Thou forgottest the path 
before, now dost thou also forget how to walk!” 

Then was there again spoken unto me without voice: "What 
matter about their mockery! Thou art one who hast unlearned 
to obey: now shalt thou command! 

Knowest thou not who is most needed by all? He who com- 
mandeth great things. 

To execute great things is difficult: but the more difficult 
task is to command great things. 

i 62 thus spake zarathustra 

This is thy most unpardonable obstinacy: thou hast tbe 
power, and thou wilt not rule.” — 

And I answered: "I lack tie lion’s voice for all command- 

Then was there again spoken unto me as a whispering: *Tt 
is the stillest words which bring the storm. Thoughts that come 
widi doves’ footsteps guide the world. 

O Zarathustra, &ou shaft go as a shadow of that which is to 
come: thus wilt thou command, and in com m a n di ng go fore- 

And I answered: "I am ashamed.” 

Then was there again spoken unto me without voice: '"Thou 
must yet become a child, and be witbout shame. 

The pride of youth is still upon thee; late hast diou become 
young: but he who would become a child must surmount even 
his youth.” — 

And I considered a long while, and trembled. At last, how- 
ever, did I say what I had said at first. *T will not.” 

Then did a laughing take place all around me. Alas, how 
that laughing lacerated my bowels and cut into my heart! 

And there was spoken unto me for the last time: "O Zara- 
thustra, thy fruits are ripe, but fliou art not ripe for thy fruits! 

So must thou go a£^ into solitude: for thou shalt yet be- 
come mellow.” — 

And again was tiiere a laughing, and it fled: then did it be- 
come still around me, as with a double stillness. I lay, however, 
on the ground, and the sweat flowed from my limbs. 

— Now have ye heard all, and why I have to return into my 
solitude. Nothing have I kept hidden from you, my friends. 

But even this have ye heard from me, who is still the most 
reserved of men — ^and will be so! 

Ah, my friends! I should have somefliing more to say unto 


you! I should have something more to give unto you! Why do 
I not give it? Am I then a niggard? — 

When, however, Zarathustra had spoken these words, the 
violence of his pain, and a sense of the nearness of his de- 
parture from his friends came over him, so that he wept aloud; 
and no one knew how to console him. In the night, however, 
he went away alone and left his friends. 



'*Ye look aloft when ye long for 
exaltation, and I look downward be- 
cause 1 am exalted. 

’*Who among you can at the same 
time laugh and be exalted? 

’’He who climbeth on the highest 
mountains, laugheth at all tragic plays 
and tragic realities." — Zarathus'IHA, 
L, '"Reading and Writing" (p. 56) . 


4^. The Wanderer 

Then, when it was about midnight, Zarathustra went his way 
over the ridge of the isle, that he might arrive early in the 
morning at tibe other coast; because there he meant to embark. 
For there was a good roadstead there, in which foreign ships 
also liked to anchor: those ships took many people with them, 
who wished to ctoss over from the Happy Isles. So when Zara- 
thustra thus ascended the moimtain, he thought on the way of 
his many solitary wanderings from youth onwards, and how 
many mountains and ridges and summits he had already 

I am a wanderer and mountain-climber, said he to his heart. 
I love not die plains, and it seemeth I cannot long sit stilL 

And whatever may still overtake me as fate and experience 
— a wandering will be therein, and a mountain-climbing: in 
die end one experiencedi only onesdf. 

The time is now past when accidents could befall me; and 
what could now fall to my lot which would not already be 
mine own! 

It retumeth only, it cometh home to me at last— mine own 
Self, and sudi of it as hath been long abroad, and scattered 
among things and accidents. 

And one thing more do I know: I stand now before my last 
summit, and before that which hath been longest reserved for 
me. Ah, my hardest path must I ascend! Ah, I have begun my 
lonesomest wandering! 



He, however, who is of my nature doth not avoid such an 
hour: the hour that saith unto him: Now only dost thou go 
the way to thy greatness! Summit and abyss — ^these are now 
comprised together! 

Thou goest the way to thy greatness : now hath it become thy 
last refuge, what was hitherto thy last danger! 

Thou goest the way to thy greatness : it must now be thy best 
courage that there is no longer any path behind thee! 

Thou goest the way to thy greatness: here shall no one steal 
after thee! Thy foot itself hath effaced the path behind thee, 
and over it standeth written: Impossibility. 

And if all ladders henceforth fail thee, then must thou learn 
to mount upon thine own head: how couldst thou mount up- 
ward otherwise? 

Upon thine own head, and bq^ond thine own heart! Now 
must the gentlest in thee become the hardest. 

He who hath always much-indulged himself, sickeneth at 
last by his much-indulgence. Praises on what maketh hardy! I 
do not praise the land where butter and honey — ^flow! 

To learn to look ati/ay from oneself, is necessary in order to 
see many things : — ^this hardiness is needed by every mountain- 

He, however, who is obtrusive with his eyes as a discerner, 
how can he ever see more of anything than its foreground! 

But thou, O Zarathustra, wouldst view the ground of every- 
thing, and its background: thus must thou mount even above 
thyself — ^up, upwards, until thou hast even thy stars undet 

Yea! To look down upon myself, and even upon my stars: 
that only would I call my summit ^ that hath remained for me 
as my last summit!— 



Thus Spake Zarathustra to himself while ascending, com- 
forting his heart with harsh maxims: for he was sore at heart as 
he had never been before. And when he had reached the top 
of the mountain-ridge, behold, there lay the other sea spread 
out before him; and he stood still and was long silent. The 
night, however, was cold at this height, and dear and starry. 

I recognise my destiny, said he at last^ sadly. Well! I am 
ready. Now hath my last lonesomeness begun. 

Ah, this sombre, sad sea, below me! Ah, this sombre noc- 
turnal vexation! Ah, fate and sea! To you must I now go down! 

Before my highest mountain do I stand, and before my 
longest wandering: therefore must I first go deq>er down flian 
I ever ascended: 

— ^Deeper down into pain than I ever ascended, even into its 
darkest flood! So willeth my fate. Wdl! I am ready. 

Whence come the highest mountains? so did I once ask. 
Then did I learn that they come out of the sea. 

That testimony is inscribed on their stones, and on the walls 
of their summits. Out of the deepest must the highest come 
to its height — 

Thus spake Zarathustra on the ridge of the moimtain where 
it was cold: when, however, he came into the vicinity of the 
sea, and at last stood alone amongst the cliffs, then had he be- 
come weary on his way, and eagerer than ever before. 

Everything as yet sleepeth, said he; even tire sea sleepedu 
Drowsily and strangely doth its eye gaze upon me. 

But it breathelh warmly — feel it. And I feel also that it 
dreameth. It tossedh about dreamily on hard pillows. 

Hark! Hark! How it groaneth with evil recollections! Or 
evil espectations? 


Ah, I am sad along with thee, thou duslgr monster, and 
angry with myself even for thy sake. 

Ah, that my hand hath not strength enough! Gladly, indeed, 
would I free thee from evil dreams! — 

And while Zarathustra thus spake, he laughed at himself 
with melancholy and bitterness. What! Zarathustra, said he, 
wilt thou even sing consolation to the sea? 

Ah, thou amiable fool, Zarathustra, thou too-blindly con- 
fiding one! But thus hast thou ever been: ever hast thou ap- 
proached confidently all that is terrible. 

Every monster wouldst thou caress. A whiff of warm breath, 
a little soft tuft on its paw: — ^and immediately wert thou ready 
to love and lure it. 

Love is the danger of the lonesomest one, love to anything, 
if it only live! Laughable, verily, is my folly and my modesty in 
love! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra, and laughed thereby a second time. 
Then, however, he thought of his abandoned friends — ^and as 
if he had done them a wrong with his thoughts, he upbraided 
himself because of his thoughts. And forthwith it came to pass 
that the laugher wept— with anger and tonging wept Zara- 
thustra bitterly. 



46. The Vision and the Enigma 

When it got abroad among the sailors that Zarathxistra was 
on board the ship — ^for a man who came from the Happy Isles 
had gone on board along with him, — ^there was great curiosity 
and expectation. But Zarathustra kept silent for two days, and 
was cold and deaf with sadness; so that he neither answered 
looks nor questions. On the evening of the second day, how- 
ever, he again opened his ears, though he still kept silent: for 
there were many curious and dangerous things to be heard on 
board the ship, which came from afar, and was to go still fur- 
ther. Zarathustra, however, was fond of all those who make 
distant voyages, and dislike to live without danger. And be- 
hold! when listening, his own tongue was at last loosened, and 
the ice of his heart broke. Then did he begin to speak thus: 

To you, the daring venturers and adventurers, and whoever 
hath embarked with cunning sails upon frightful seas, — 

To you the enigma-intoxicated, the twilight-enjoyers, whose 
souls are allured by flutes to every treacherous gulf : 

— ^For ye dislike to grope at a thread witibt cowardly hand; 
and where ye can divine, there do ye hate to calculate — 

To you only do I tell the enigma that I saw — the vision of 
the lonesomest one. — 

Gloomily walked I lately in corpse-coloured twilight — 
gloomily and sternly, with compressed lips. Not only one sun 
had set for me. 

A path which ascended daringly among boulders, an evil, 
lonesome path, which neither herb nor shrub any longer 


cheered, a mountain-path, crunched under the daring of my 

Mutely marching over the scornful clinking of pebbles, 
trampling the stone that let it slip: thus did my foot force its 
way upwards. 

Upwards: — ^in spite of the spirit that drew it downwards, 
towards the abyss, the spirit of gravity, my devil and arch- 

Upwards : — ^although it sat upon me, half-dwarf, half -mole; 
paralysed, paralysing; dripping lead in mine ear, and thoughts 
like drops of lead into my brain. 

”0 Zarathustra,*’ it whispered scornfully, syllable by 
syllable, '*thou stone of wisdom! Thou threwest thyself high, 
but every thrown stone must — ^fall! 

0 Zarathustra, thou stone of wisdom, thou sling-stone, thou 
star-destroyer! Thyself threwest thou so high, — ^but every 
thrown stone — ^must fall! 

Condemned of thyself, and to thine own stoning: O Zara- 
thustra, far indeed threwest thou thy stone — ^but upon thyself 
will it recoil!” 

Then was the dwarf silent; and it lasted long. The silence, 
however, oppressed me; and to be thus in pairs, one is verily 
lonesomer than when alone! 

1 ascended, I ascended, I dreamt, I thought, — ^but everything 
oppressed me, A sick one did I resemble, whom bad torture 
wearieth, and a worse dream reawakeneth out of his first 
sleep. — 

But there is something in me which I call courage: it hath 
hitherto slain for me every dejection. This courage at last 
bade me stand still and say: '*Dwarf ! Thou! Or I!” — 

For courage is the best slayer, — courage which attacketh: 
for in every attack there is sound of triumph. 


Man, however, is the most courageous animal: thereby hath 
he overcome every animal. With sound of triumph hath he 
overcome every pain; human pain, however, is the sorest pain. 

Courage slayeth also giddiness at abysses: and where doth 
man not stand at abysses! Is not seeing itself — ^seeing abysses? 

Courage is the best slayer; courage slayeth also fellow-suffer- 
ing. Fellow-suffering, however, is the deepest abyss: as deeply 
as man looketh into life, so deeply also doth he look into suf- 

Courage, however, is the best slayer, courage which at- 
tacketh: it slayeth even death itself; for it saith: ^^Was that 
life? Well! Once more!'* 

In such speech, however, there is much sound of triumph. 
He who hath ears to hear, let him hear. — 


‘‘Halt, dwarf!" said I. "Either I — or thou! I, however, am 
the stronger of the two: — ^thou knowest not mine abysmal 
thought! It — couldst thou not endure!" 

Then happened that which made me lighter: for the dwarf 
sprang from my shoulder, the prying sprite! And it squatted 
on a stone in front of me. There was however a gateway just 
where we halted. 

"Look at this gateway! Dwarf!" I continued, "it hath two 
faces. Two roads come together here: these hath no one yet 
gone to the end of. 

This long lane backwards: it continued! for an eternity. And 
that long lane forward — ^that is another eternity. 

They are antithetical to one another, these roads; they 
directly abut on one another: — ^and it is here, at this gateway. 

174 thus spake zarathustra 

that the7 come together. The name of the gateway is inscribed 
above: 'This Moment.’ 

But should one follow them further — and ever further and 
further on, thinkest thou, dwarf, that these roads would be 
eternally antithetical.^’’ — 

"Everything straight lieth,” murmured the dwarf, con- 
temptuously. "All truth is crooked; time itself is a circle.’’ 

"Thou spirit of gravity!” said I wrathfully, "do not take it 
too lightly! Or I shall let thee squat where thou squattest, 
Haltfoot, — and I carried thee highV* 

"Observe,” continued I, "This Moment! From the gate- 
way, This Moment, there runneth a long eternal lane back- 
wards: behind us lieth an eternity. 

Must not whatever can run its course of all things, have 
already run along that lane? Must not whatever can happen of 
all things have already happened, resulted, and gone by? 

And if everything has already existed, what thinkest thou, 
dwarf, of This Moment? Must not this gateway also — ^have 
already existed? 

And are not all things closely bound together in such wise 
that ’This Moment draweth all coming things after it? Conse- 
quently — ^itself also? 

For whatever can run its course of all things, also in this 
long lane outward — must it once more run! — 

And this slow spider which creepeth in the moonlight, and 
this moonlight itself, and thou and I in this gateway whisper- 
ing together, whispering of eternal things — ^must we not all 
have already existed? 

— ^And must we not return and run in that other lane out 
before us, that long weird lane — ^must we not eternally re- 
turn?” — 

Thus did I speak, and always more softly: for I was afraid 



of mine own thoughts, and arrear-thoughts. Then, suddenly 
did I hear a dog howl near me. 

Had I ever heard a dog howl thus? My thoughts ran back. 
Yes! When I was a child, in my most distant childhood: 

— ^Then did I hear a dog howl thus. And saw it also, with 
hair bristling, its head upwards, trembling in the stillest mid- 
night, when even dogs believe in ghosts: 

— So that it excited my commiseration. For just then went 
the full moon, silent as death, over the house; just then did it 
stand still, a glowing globe — ^at rest on the flat roof, as if on 
some one’s property: — 

Thereby had the dog been terrified: for dogs believe in 
thieves and ghosts. And when I again heard such howling, then 
did it excite my commiseration once more. 

Where was now the dwarf? And the gateway? And the 
spider? And all the whispering? Had I dreamt? Had I 
awakened? ’Twixt rugged rocks did I suddenly stand alone, 
dreary in the dreariest moonlight. 

But there lay a man! And there! The dog leaping, bristling, 
whining — ^now did it see me coming — then did it howl again, 
then did it cry : — ^had I ever heard a dog cry so for help? 

And verily, what I saw, the like had I never seen. A young 
shepherd did I see, writhing, choking, quivering, with dis- 
torted countenance, and with a heavy black serpent hanging 
out of his mouth. 

Had I ever seen so much loathing and pale horror on one 
countenance? He had perhaps gone to sleep? Then had the 
serpent crawled into his throat— there had it bitten itself fast. 

My hand pulled at the serpent, and pulled: — ^in vain! I 
failed to pull the serpent out of his throat. Then there cried out 
of me: '"Bite! Bite! 

Its head off! Bite!’* — ^so cried it out of me; my horror, my 



hatred, my loathing, my pity, all my good and my bad cried 
with one voice out of me. — 

Ye daring ones around me! Ye venturers and adventurers, 
and whoever of you have embarked with cunning sails on unex- 
plored seas! Ye enigma-enjoyers! 

Solve unto me the enigma that I then beheld, interpret unto 
me the vision of the lonesomest one! 

For it was a vision and a foresight : — what did I then behold 
in parable? And who is it that must come some day? 

Who is the shepherd into whose throat the serpent thus 
crawled? Who is the man into whose throat all the heaviest 
and blackest will thus crawl? 

— ^The shepherd however bit as my cry had admonished 
him; he bit with a strong bite! Far away did he spit the head of 
the serpent: — ^and sprang up. — 

No longer shepherd, no longer man — 2, transfigured being, a 
light-surrounded being, that laughed! Never on earth laughed 
a man as he laughed! 

O my brethren, I heard a laughter which was no human 
laughter, — ^and now gnaweth a thirst at me, a longing that 
is never allayed. 

My longing for that laughter gnaweth at me: oh, how can I 
still endure to live! And how could I endure to die at present! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra, 



^ 7 . Involuntary Bliss 

With such enigmas and bitterness in his heart did Zarathustra 
sail o'er the sea. When, however, he was four day-joumeys 
from the Happy Isles and from his friends, then had he sur- 
mounted all his pain: — ^triumphantly and with firm foot did 
he again accept his fate. And then talked Zarathustra in this 
wise to his exulting conscience: 

Alone am I again, and like to be so, alone with the pure 
heaven, and the open sea; and again is the afternoon around 

On an afternoon did I find my friends for the first time; on 
an afternoon, also, did I find them a second time: — ^at the hour 
when all light becometh stiller. 

For whatever happiness is stiU on its way *twixt heaven and 
earth, now seeketh for lodging a luminous soul: tuith happi- 
ness hath all light now become stiller. 

O afternoon of my life! Once did my happiness also descend 
to the valley that it might seek a lodging; then did it find 
those open hospitable souls. 

O afternoon of my life! What did I not surrender that I 
might have one thing: this living plantation of my thoughts, 
and this dawn of my highest hope! 

Companions did the creating one once seek, and children of 
his hope: and lo, it turned out that he could not find them, 
except he himself should first create them. 

Thus am I in the midst of my work, to my children going, 
and from them returning: for the sake of his children must 
Zarathustra perfect himself. 



For in one’s heart one loveth only one’s child and one’s 
work; and where there is great love to oneself, then is it the 
sign of pregnancy: so have I found it. 

Still are my children verdant in their first spring, standing 
nigh one another, and shaken in common by the winds, the 
trees of my garden and of my best soil. 

And verily, where such trees stand beside one another, there 
are Happy Isles! 

But one day will I take them up, and put each by itself alone: 
that it may learn lonesomeness and defiance and prudence. 

Gnarled and crooked and with flexible hardness shall it 
then stand by the sea, a living lighthouse of unconquerable life. 

Yonder where the storms rush down into the sea, and the 
snout of the mountain drinketh water, shall each on a time 
have his day and night watches, for his testing and recognition. 

Recognised and tested shall each be, to see if he be of my 
type and lineage: — ^if he be master of a long will, silent even 
when he speaketh, and giving in such wise that he taketh in 

— ^So that he may one day become my companion, a fellow- 
creator and fellow-enjoyer with Zarathustra: — ^such a one as 
writeth my will on my tables, for the fuller perfection of all 

And for his sake and for those like him, must I perfect 
myself: therefore do I now avoid my happiness, and present 
myself to every misfortune — ^for my final testing and recogni- 

And verily, it were time that I went away; and the wan- 
derer’s shadow and the longest tedium and the stillest hour — 
have all said unto me: ''It is the highest time!” 

The word blew to me through the keyhole and said "Come!” 
The door sprang subtly open unto me, and said "Go!” 



But I lay endiained to my love for my children: desire 
spread this snare for me — ^the desire for love — ^that I should 
b^ome the prey of my children, and lose myself in them. 

Desiring — ^that is now for me to have lost myself. I possess 
you, my children! In this possessing shall everything be assur- 
ance and nothing desire. 

But brooding lay the sun of my love upon me, in his own 
juice stewed Zarathustra, — ^then did shadows and doubts fly 
past me. 

For frost and winter I now longed: "Oh, that frost and 
winter would again make me crack and crunch!’* sighed I: 
— ^then arose icy mist out of me. 

My past burst its tomb, many pains buried alike woke up : — 
fully slept had they merely, concealed in corpse-clothes. 

So called everything imto me in signs: "It is time!” But I — 
heard not, imtil at last mine abyss moved, and my thought bit 

Ah, abysmal thought, which art my thought! When shall I 
find strength to hear thee burrowing, and no longer tremble.^ 

To my very throat throbbeth my heart when I hear them 
burrowing! Thy muteness even is like to strangle me, thou 
abysmal mute one! 

As yet have I never ventured to call thee up; it hath been 
enough that I — ^have carried thee about with me! As yet have I 
not been strong enough for my final lion-wantonness and 

Sufficiently formidable unto me hath thy weight ever been: 
but one day shall I yet find the strength and the lion’s voice 
which will call thee up! 

When I shall have surmounted myself therein, then will I 
surmount myself also in that which is greater; and a victory 
shall be the seal of my perfection! — 


Meanwhile do I sail along on uncertain seas; chance flat- 
tereth me, smooth-tongued chance; forward and backward do 
I gaze — still see I no end. 

As yet hath the hour of my final stmggle not come to me — 
or doth it come to me perhaps just now? Verily, with insidious 
beauty do sea and life gaze upon me round about: 

O afternoon of my life! O happiness before eventide! O 
haven upon high seas! O peace in xmcertainty! How I distrust 
all of you! 

Verily, distrustful am I of your insidious beauty! Like the 
lover am I, who distnisteth too sleek smiling. 

As he pushedi the best-beloved before him — ^tender even in 
severity, the jealous one — so do I push this blissful hour be- 
fore me. 

Away with thee, thou blissful hour! With thee hath there 
come to me an involuntary bliss! Ready for my severest pain 
do I here stand: — ^at the wrong time hast thou come! 

Away with thee, thou blissful hour! Rather harbour there — 
with my children! Hasten! and bless them before eventide with 
my happiness! 

There, already approacheth eventide: the sim sinketh. 
Away — vay happiness! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. And he waited for his misfortune 
the whole night; but he waited in vain. The night remained 
clear and ca lm , and happiness itself came nigher and nigher 
unto him. Towards morning, however, Zarathustra laughed to 
his heart, and said moddngly: "Happiness runneth after me. 
That is because I do not run after wwnen. Happiness, however, 
is a woman.” 



48. Before Sunrise 

O HEAVEN above me, thou pure, thou deep heaven! Thou 
abyss of light! Gazing on thee, I tremble with divine desires. 

Up to thy height to toss myself — ^that is my depth! In thy 
purity to hide myself — ^that is mine innocence! 

The God veileth his beauty: thus hidest thou thy stars. Thou 
speakest not: thus prodaimest thou thy wisdom unto me. 

Mute o*er the raging sea hast thou risen for me to-day; thy 
love and thy modesty make a revelation unto my raging soul. 

In that thou earnest unto me beautiful, veiled in thy beauty, 
in that thou spakest unto me mutely, obvious in thy wisdom: 

Oh, how could I fail to divine all the modesty of thy soul! 
Before the sun didst thou come unto me — ^the lonesomest one. 

We have been friends from the beginning: to us are grief, 
gruesomeness, and ground common; even the sun is common 
to us. 

We do not speak to each other, because we know too 
much — : we keep silent to each other, we smile our knowl- 
edge to each other. 

Art thou not the light of my fire? Hast thou not the sister- 
soul of mine insight? 

Together did we learn everything; together did we leam to 
ascend beyond ourselves to ourselves, and to smile imdoud- 

— Undoudedly to smile down out of luminous eyes and out 
of miles of distance, when under us constraint and purpose 
and guilt stream like rain. 

And wandered I alone, for what did my soul hunger by 
night and in labyrinthine paths? And climbed I mountains, 
whom did I ever seek, if not thee, upon mountains? 


And all my wandering and mountain-climbing: a necessity 
was it merely, and a makeshift of the unhandy one: — ^to fly 
only, wanteth mine entire will, to fly into tijee! 

And what have I hated more than passing clouds, and what- 
ever tainteth thee? And mine own hatred have I even hated, 
because it tainted thee! 

The passing clouds I detest — ^those stealthy cats of prey: 
they take from thee and me what is common to us — ^the vast 
unbounded Yea- and Amen-saying. 

These mediators and mixers we detest — ^the passing clouds: 
those half-and-half ones, that have neither learned to bless 
nor to curse from the heart. 

Rather will I sit in a tub under a closed heaven, rather will 
I sit in the abyss without heaven, than see thee, thou luminous 
heaven, tainted with passing clouds! 

And oft have I longed to pin them fast with the jagged 
gold-wires of lightning, that I might, like the thunder, beat the 
drum upon their kettle-bellies: — 

— ^An angry drummer, because they rob me of thy Yea and 
Amen! — ^thou heaven above me, thou pure, thou luminous 
heaven! Thou abyss of light! — ^because they rob thee of my 
Yea and Amen. 

For rather will I have noise and thunders and tempest-blasts, 
than this discreet, doubting cat-repose; and also amongst men 
do I hate most of all the soft-treaders, and half-and-half ones, 
and the doubting, hesitating, passing clouds. 

And '"he who cannot bless shall learn to curse!'’ — ^this clear 
teaching dropt unto me from the dear heaven; this star 
standeth in my heaven even in dark nights. 

I, however, am a blesser and a Yea-sayer, if thou be but 
around me, thou pure, thou luminous heaven! Thou abyss of 



light! — ^into all abysses dolthencarrymy beneficent Yea-saying* 

A blesser have I become and a Yea-sayer: and therefore 
strove I long and was a striver, that I might one day get my 
hands free for blessing. 

This, however, is my blessing: to stand above everything 
as its own heaven, its round roof, its azure bell and eternal 
security: and blessed is he who thus blesseth! 

For all things are baptized at the font of eternity, and be- 
yond good and evil; good and evil themselves, however, are 
but fugitive shadows and damp afflictions and passing clouds. 

Verily, it is a blessing and not a blasphemy when I teach 
that **above all things there standeth the heaven of chance, the 
heaven of innocence, the heaven of hazard, the heaven of wan- 

“Of Hazard” — ^that is the oldest nobility in the world; that 
gave I back to all things; I emancipated them from bondage 
under purpose. 

This freedom and celestial serenity did I put like an azure 
bell above all things, when I taught that over them and through 
them, no “eternal Will” — ^wiUeth, 

This w'antonness and folly did I put in place of that Will, 
when I taught that “In everything there is one thing impossible 
— ^rationality!” 

A little reason, to be sure, a germ of wisdom scattered from 
star to star — ^this leaven is mixed in all things: for the sake of 
folly, wisdom is mixed in all things! 

A little wisdom is indeed possible; but this blessed security 
have I found in all things, that they prefer — to dance on the 
feet of chance. 

O heaven above me! thou pure, thou lofty heaven! This is 
now thy purity unto me, that there is no eternal reason-spider 
and reason-cobweb: — 


— ^That thou art to me a dancing-floor for divine chances, 
that thou art to me a table of the Gods, for divine dice and dice- 
players! — 

But thou blushest? Have I spoken unspeakable things? Have 
I abused, when I meant to bless thee? 

Or is it the shame of being two of us that maketh thee blush! 
— ^Dost tiiou bid me go and be silent, becaizse now — day 

The world is deep: — ^and deeper than e’er the day could 
read. Not everything may be uttered in presence of day. But 
day cometh : so let us part! 

O heaven above me, thou modest one! thou glowing one! O 
thou, my happiness before sunrise! The day cometh: so let us 
part! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

^g. The Bedwarfing Virtue 


When Zarathustra was again on the continent, he did not go 
straightway to his mountains and his cave, but made many 
wanderings and questionings, and ascertained this and that; 
so that he said of himself jestingly: **Lo, a river that floweth 
back unto its source in many windings! ’ ' For he wanted to learn 
what had taken ph.ce among men during the interval : whether 
they had become greater or smaller. And once, when he saw a 
row of new houses, he marvelled, and said: 


'*What do these houses mean? V erily, no great soul put them 
up as its simile! 

Did perhaps a silly child take them out of its toy-box? 
Would that another child put them again into the box! 

And these rooms and chambers — can men go out and in 
there? They seem to be made for silk dolls; or for dainty-eaters, 
who perhaps let others eat with them/’ 

And Zarathustra stood still and meditated. At last he said 
sorrowfully: **There hath everything become smaller! 

Everywhere do I see lower doorways: he who is of my type 
can still go therethrough, but — ^he must stoop! 

Oh, when shall I arrive again at my home, where I shall no 
longer have to stoop— shall no longer have to stoop before the 
small onesF * — ^And Zarathustra sighed, and gazed into the 
distance. — 

The same day, however, he gave his discourse on the be- 
dwarfing virtue. 

I pass through this people and keep mine eyes open: they 
do not forgive me for not envying their virtues. 

They bite at me, because I say unto them that for small 
people, small virtues are necessary — ^and because it is hard for 
me to understand that small people are necessary! 

Here am I still like a cock in a strange farm-yard, at which 
even the hens peck: but on that account I am not unfriendly 
to the hens. 

I am courteous towards them, as towards all small annoy- 
ances; to be prickly towards what is small, seemeth to me 
wisdom for hedgehogs. 


They all speak of me when they sit Biound their fire in the 
evening — ^they speak of me, but no one thinketh — of me! 

This is the new stillness which I have experienced: their 
noise around me spreadeth a mantle over my thoughts. 

They shout to one another: **What is this gloomy cloud 
about to do to us? Let us see that it doth not bring a plague 
upon usr* 

And recently did a woman seize upon her child that was 
coming unto me: 'Take the children away,” cried she, "such 
eyes scorch children's souls.” 

They cough when I speak: they think coughing an objec- 
tion to strong winds — ^they divine nothing of the boisterous- 
ness of my happiness! 

"Wehave not yet time for Zarathustra” — so they object; but 
what matter about a time that "hath no time” for Zarathustra? 

And if they should altogether praise me, how could I go to 
sleep on praise? A girdle of spines is their praise imto 
me: it scratcheth me even when I take it off. 

And this also did I learn among them: the praiser doeth as 
if he gave back; in truth, however, he wanteth more to be given 

Ask my foot if their lauding and luring strains please it! 
Verily, to such measure and ticktack, it liketh neither to dance 
nor to stand still. 

To small virtues would they fain lure and laud me; to the 
ticktack of small happiness would they fain persuade my foot 

I pass through this people and keep mine eyes open; they 
have become smaller, and ever become smaller : — the reason 
thereof is their doctrine of happiness and virtue. 

For thqr are moderate also in virtue, — ^because they want 
comfort. With comfort, however, moderate virtue only is com- 



To be sure, they also learn in their way to stride on and stride 
forward; that, I call their hobbling , — ^Thereby they b^ome a 
hindrance to all who are in haste. 

And many of them go forward, and look backwards iher^y, 
with stiffened necks : those do I like to run up against. 

Foot and eye shall not lie, nor give the lie to each other. But 
there is much lying among small people. 

Some of them will 3 but most of them are willed. Some of 
them are genuine, but most of them are bad actors. 

There are actors without knowing it amongst them, and 
actors without intending it — ^ the genuine ones are always 
rare, especially the genuine actors. 

Of man there is little here: therefore do their women mascu- 
linise themselves. For only he who is man enough, will — scive 
the woman in woman. 

And this hypocrisy found I worst amongst them, that even 
those who command feign the virtues of those who serve. 

‘1 serve, thou servest, we serve” — so chanteth here even the 
hypocrisy of the rulers — ^and alas! if the first lord be only the 
first servant! 

Ah, even upon their hypocrisy did mine eyes’ curiosity 
alight; and well did I divine all their fly-happiness, and their 
bu22ing around sunny window-panes. 

So much kindness, so much weakness do I see. So much jus- 
tice and pity, so much weakness. 

Round, fair, and considerate are they to one another, as 
grains of sand are round, fair, and considerate to grains of 

Modestly to embrace a small happiness — ihat do they call 
‘"submission”! and at the same time they peer modestly after 
a new small happiness. 

In their hearts they want simply one thing most of all: that 



no one hurt them. Thus do they anticipate every one’s wishes 
and do well unto every one. 

That, however, is cowardice, though it be called 'Virtue.” — 

And when they chance to speak harshly, those small people, 
then do 1 hear therein only their hoarseness — every draught of 
air maketh them hoarse. 

Shrewd indeed are they, their virtues have shrewd fingers. 
But they lack fists: their fingers do not know how to creep 
behind fists. 

Virtue for them is what maketh modest and tame: there- 
with have they made the wolf a dog, and man himself man’s 
best domestic animal. 

"We set our chair in the midsf ^ — ^so saith their smirking 
imto me — "and as far from dying gladiators as from satisfied 

That, however, is — mediocrity, though it be called modera- 
tion. — 


I pass through this people and let fall many words: but 
they know neither how to take nor how to retain them. 

They wonder why I came not to revile venery and vice; 
and verily, I came not to warn against pickpockets either! 

They wonder why I am not ready to abet and whet their 
wisdom: as if they had not yet enough of wiseacres, whose 
voices grate on mine ear like slate-pencils! 

And when I call out: "Curse all the cowardly devils in you, 

that would fain whimper and fold the hands and adore” 

then do they shout: "Zarathustra is godless.” 


And especially do their teachers of submission shout this; — 
but precisely in their ears do I love to cry: '*Yea! I am Zara- 
thustra, the godless!” 

Those teachers of submission! Wherever there is aught 
puny, or sickly, or scabby, there do they creep like lice; and 
only my disgust preventeth me from cracking them. 

Well! This is my sermon for their ears: I am Zarathustra 
the godless, who saith: ''Who is more godless than I, that I 
may enjoy his teaching?” 

I am Zarathustra the godless: where do I find mine equal? 
And all those are mine equals who give unto themselves their 
Will, and divest themselves of all submission. 

I am Zarathustra the godless! I cook every chance in my pot. 
And only when it hath been quite cooked do I welcome it as 
my food. 

And verily, many a chance came imperiously unto me: but 
still more imperiously did my Will speak xmto it, — ^then did it 
lie imploringly upon its knees — 

— ^Imploring that it might find home and heart with me, 
and saying flatteringly: "See, O Zarathustra, how friend only 
cometh unto friend!” — 

But why talk I, when no one hath mine ears! And so will I 
shout it out unto all the winds: 

Ye ever become smaller, ye small people! Ye crumble away, 
ye comfortable ones! Ye will yet perish — 

— ^By your many small virtues, by your many small omis- 
sions, and by your many small submissions! 

Too tender, too yielding: so is your soil! But for a tree to 
become greats it seeketh to twine hard roots around hard rocks! 

Also what ye omit weaveth at the web of all the human 
future; even your naught is a cobweb, and a spider that liveth 
on the blood of the future. 


And when ye take, then is it like stealing, ye small virtuous 
ones; but even among knaves honour saith that ''one shall only 
steal when one cannot rob/' 

"It giveth itself” — ^that is also a doctrine of submission. 
But I say unto you, ye comfortable ones, that it taketh to itself^ 
and will ever take more and more from you! 

Ah, that ye would renounce all willing, and would de- 
cide for idleness as ye decide for action! 

Ah, that ye understood my word: "Do ever what ye will — 
but first be such as can taill. 

Love ever your neighbour as yourselves — ^but first be such 
as love themselves — 

— Such as love with great love, such as love with great con- 
tempt!” Thus speaketh Zarathustra the godless. — 

But why talk I, when no one hath mine ears! It is still an 
hour too early for me here. 

Mine own forerunner am I among this people, mine own 
cockaow in dark lanes. 

But theif hour cometh! And there cometh also mine! Hourly 
do they become smaller, poorer, unfruitfuller, — poor herbs! 
poor earth! 

And soon shall they stand before me like dry grass and 
prairie, and verily, weary of themselves — and panting for f/re, 
more than for water! 

O blessed hour of the lightning! O mystery before noontide! 
•—Running fires will I one day make of them, and heralds with 
flaming tongues: — 

— ^Herald shall they one day with flaming tongues: It 
cometh, it is nigh, the great noontide! 

Thus spake Zarathustra, 



50 . On the Olive-Mount 

Winter, a bad guest, sitteth with me at home; blue are my 
hands with his friendly handshaking, 

I honour him, that bad guest, but gladly leave him alone. 
Gladly do I run away from him; and when one runneth tt/eU, 
then one escapeth him! 

With warm feet and warm thoughts do I run where the 
wind is calm — to the sunny corner of mine olive-mount 

There do I laugh at my stem guest, and am still fond of 
him; because he cleareth my house of flies, and quieteth many 
little noises. 

For he suffereth it not if a gnat wanteth to buzz, or even 
two of them; also the lanes maketh he lonesome, so that the 
moonlight is afraid there at night. 

A hard guest is he, — but I honour him, and do not wor^ 
ship, like the tenderlings, the pot-bellied fire-idoL 

Better even a little teeth-chattering than idol-adoration! — 
so willeth my nature. And especially have I a grudge against ail 
ardent, steaming, steamy fire-idols. 

Him whom I love, I love better in winter than in summer; 
better do I now mock at mine enemies, and more heartily, 
when winter sitteth in my house. 

Heartily, verily, even when I cree^ into bed — : there, still 
laugheth and wantoneth my hidden happiness; even my decep- 
tive dream laugheth. 

I, a — creeper? Never in my life did I creep before the power- 
ful; and if ever I lied, then did I lie out of love. Therefore am 
I glad even in my winter-bed. 


A poor bed -warmeth me more than a rich one, for I am jeal- 
ous of my poverty. And in winter she is most f aithfxil unto me. 

With a wickedness do I begin every day: I mock at the 
winter with a cold bath: on that account grumbleth my stem 

Also do I like to tickle him with a wax-taper, that he may 
finally let the heavens emerge from ashy-grey twilight. 

For especially wicked am I in the morning: at the early 
hour when the pail rattleth at the well, and horses neigh 
warmly in grey lanes: — 

Impatiently do I then wait, that the clear sky may finally 
dawn for me, the snow-bearded winter-sky, the hoary one, the 
white-head, — 

— ^The winter-sky, the silent winter-sky, which often stifleth 
even its sun! 

Did I perhaps leam from it the long dear silence? Or did 
it leam it from me? Or hath each of us devised it himself? 

Of all good things the origin is a thousandfold, — ^all good 
roguish things spring into existence for joy: how could they 
always do so — ^for once only! 

A good roguish thing is also the long silence, and to look, 
like the winter-sky, out of a dear, roimd-eyed countenance: — 

— ^Like it to stifle one’s sun, and one’s inflexible solar will: 
verily, this art and this winter-roguishness have I learned zi/eU/ 

My best-loved wickedness and art is it, that my silence hath 
learned not to betray itself by silence. 

Clattering with diction and dice, I outwit the solemn assist- 
ants: all those stem watchers, shall my will and purpose elude 

'That no one might see down into my depth and into mine 
ultimate will — ^for that purpose did I devise the long dear 



Many a shrewd one did I find: he veiled his countenance and 
made his water muddy, that no one might see therethrough 
and thereunder. 

But precisely unto him came the shrewder distrusters and 
nut-crackers: precisely from him did they fish his best-con- 
cealed fish! 

But the dear, the honest, the transparent — ^these are for me 
the wisest silent ones: in them, so profound is the depth that 
even the clearest water doth not — betray it. — 

Thou snow-bearded, silent, winter-sky, thou round-eyed 
whitehead above me! Oh, thou heavenly simile of my soul and 
its wantonness! 

And must I not conceal myself like one who hath swallowed 
gold — ^lest my soul should be ripped up? 

Must I not wear stilts, that they may overlook my long legs 
— ^all those enviers and injurers around me? 

Those dingy, fire-warmed, used-up, green-tinted, ill- 
natured souls — ^how could their envy endure my happiness! 

Thus do I show them only the ice and winter of my peaks — 
and not that my mountain windeth all the solar girdles around 

They hear only the whistling of my winter-storms: and 
know not that I also travel over warm seas, like longing, heavy, 
hot south-winds. 

They commiserate also my accidents and chances: — ^but my 
word saith: "Suflfer the chance to come imto me: innocent is 
it as a little child!'' 

How could they endure my happiness, if I did not put 
around it accidents, and winter-privations, and bear-skin caps, 
and enmantling snowflakes! 

— ^If I did not myself commiserate their pity, the pity of 
those enviers and injurers! 



— ^If I did not myself sigh before them, and chatter with 
cold, and patiently let myself be swathed in their pity! 

This is the wise waggish- will and good-will of my soul, that 
it concedeth not its winters and glacial storms; it concealeth 
not its chilblains either. 

To one man, lonesomeness is the flight of the sick one; to 
another, it is the flight from the sick ones. 

Let them Aear me chattering and sighing with winter-cold, 
all those poor squinting knaves around me! With such sighing 
and chattering do I flee from their heated rooms. 

Let them sympathise with me and sigh with me on account 
of my chilblains: ''At the ice of knowledge will he yet fre^eze 
to deathr ^ — so they mourn. 

Meanwhile do I run with warm feet hither and thither on 
mine olive-mount: in the sunny corner of mine olive-moxint 
do I sing, and mock at all pity. — 

Thus sang Zaratfaustra. 

jj. On Passing-By 

Thus slowly wandering through many peoples and divers 
cities, did Zarathustra return by round-about roads to his 
mountains and his cave. And behold, thereby came he un- 
awares also to the gate of the great city. Here, however, a 
foaming fool, with extended hands, sprang forward to him and 
stood in his way. It was the same fool whom the people called 
"the ape of Zarathustra:*' for he had learned from him some- 
thing of the expression and modulation of language, and per- 



haps liked also to borrow from the store of his wisdom. And 
the fool talked thus to Zarathustra: 

O Zarathustra, here is the great city: here hast thou nothing 
to seek and everything to lose. 

Why wouldst thou wade through this mire? Have pity upon 
thy foot! Spit rather on the gate of the city, and — ^turn back! 

Here is the hell for anchorites' thoughts: here are great 
thoughts seethed alive and boiled small. 

Here do all great sentiments decay: here may only rattle- 
boned sensations rattle! 

Smellest thou not already the shambles and cookshops of 
the spirit? Steameth not this dty with the fumes of slaughtered 

Seest thou not the souls hanging like limp dirty rags? — ^And 
they make newspapers also out of these rags! 

Hearest thou not how spirit hath here become a verbal 
game? Loathsome verbal swill doth it vocGdt forth! — ^And they 
make newspapers also out of this verbal swilL 

They hound one another, and know not whither! They in- 
flame one another, and know not why! They tinkle with their 
pinchbeck, they jingle with their gold. 

They are cold, and seek warmth from distilled waters: they 
are inflamed, and seek coolness from frozen spirits; they are 
all sick and sore through public opinion. 

All lusts and vices are here at home; but here there are also 
the virtuous; there is much appointable appointed virtue: — 

Much appointable virtue with scribe-fingers, and hardy 
sitting-flesh and waiting-flesh, blessed with small breast-stars, 
and padded, haunchless daughters. 

There is here also much piety, and much faithful spittle- 
licking and spittle-backing, before the God of Hosts. 



'Trom on high/* drippeth the star, and the gracious spittle; 
for the high, longeth every starless bosom. 

The moon hath its court, and the court hath its moon- 
calves: unto all, however, that cometh from the court do the 
mendicant people pray, and all appointable mendicant virtues. 

*1 serve, thou servest, we serve” — so prayeth all appoint- 
able virtue to the prince: that the merited star may at last stick 
on the slender breast! 

But the moon still revolveth around all that is earthly: so 
revolveth also the prince around what is earthliest of all — 
that, however, is the gold of the shopman. 

The God of the Hosts of war is not the God of the golden 
bar; the prince proposeth, but the shopman — disposeth! 

By all that is luminous and strong and good in thee, O Zara- 
thustra! Spit on this city of shopmen and return back! 

Here floweth aU blood putridly and tepidly and frothily 
through all veins: spit on the great city, which is the great 
slum where all the scum frotheth together! 

Spit on the city of compressed souls and slender breasts, of 
pointed eyes and sticky fingers — 

— On the city of the obtrusive, the brazen-faced, the pen- 
demagogues and tongue-demagogues, the overheated ambi- 
tious: — 

Where everything maimed, ill-famed, lustful, untrustful, 
over-mellow, sickly-yellow and seditious, festereth perni- 
ciously: — 

— ^Spit on the great dty and turn back! — 

Here, however, did Zarathustra interrupt the foaming fool, 
and shut his mouth. — 

Stop this at once! called out Zarathustra, long have thy 
speech and thy species disgusted me! 



Why didst thou live so long by the swamp, that thou thy- 
self hadst to become a frog and a toad? 

Floweth there not a tainted, frothy, swamp-blood in thine 
own veins, when thou hast thus learned to croak and revile? 

Why wentest thou not into the forest? Or why didst thou 
not till the ground? Is the sea not full of green islands? 

I despise thy contempt; and when thou warnedst me — ^why 
didst thou not warn thyself? 

Out of love alone shall my contempt and my warning bird 
take wing; but not out of the swamp! — 

They call thee mine ape, thou foaming fool: but I call thee 
my grunting-pig, — by thy grunting, thou spoilest even my 
praise of folly. 

What was it that first made thee grunt? Because no one 
sufficiently flattered thee: — ^therefore didst thou seat thyself 
beside this filth, that thou mightest have cause for much grunt- 

— ^That thou mightest have cause for much vengeance! For 
vengeance, thou vain fool, is all thy foaming; I have divined 
thee well! 

But thy fools'-word injureth me, even when thou art right! 
And even if Zarathustra's word tvere a hundred times justified, 
thou wouldst ever — dc? wrong with my word! 

Thus spake Zarathustra. Then did he look on the great city 
and sighed, and was long silent. At last he spake thus : 

I loathe also this great city, and not only this fool. Here and 
there — ^there is nothing to better, nothing to worsen. 

Woe to this great city! — ^And I would that I already saw the 
pillar of fire in which it will be consumed! 

For such pillars of fire must precede the great noontide. But 
this hath its time and its own fate. — 


This precept, however, give I unto thee, in parting, thou 
fool; Where one can no longer love, there should one — pass 

Thus spake Zarathustra, and passed by the fool and the 
great city. 

^2. The Apostates 


Ah, lieth everything already withered and grey which but 
lately stood green and many-hued on this meadow! And how 
much honey of hope did I carry hence into my beehives! 

Those young hearts have already all become old — ^and not 
old even! only weary, ordinary, comfortable; — ^they declare it: 
*'We have again become pious.” 

Of late did I see them run forth at early mom with valorous 
steps; but the feet of their knowledge became weary, and now 
do they malign even their morning valoixr! 

Verily, many of them once lifted their legs like the dancer; 
to them winked the laughter of my wisdom; — ^then did they 
bethink themselves. Just now have I seen them bent down — ^to 
creep to the cross. 

Around light and liberty did they once flutter like gnats and 
young poets. A little older, a little colder; and already are they 
mystifiers, and mumblers and mollycoddles. 

Did perhaps their hearts despond, because lonesomeness 
had swallowed me like a whale? Did their ear perhaps hearken 



yeamingly-loiig for me in vain, and for my trumpet-notes and 

— ^Ah! Ever are there but few of those whose hearts have 
persistent courage and exuberance; and in such remaineth also 
the spirit patient. The rest, however, are cowardly. 

The rest: these are always the great majority, the common- 
place, the superfluous, the far-too many — ^those all are 
cowardly! — 

Him who is of my type, will also the experiences of my type 
meet on the way: so that his first companions must be corpses 
and buffoons. 

His second companions, however — ^they will call themselves 
his believers , — ^will be a living host, with much love, much 
folly, much unbearded veneration. 

To those believers shall he who is of my type among men 
not bind his heart; in those spring-times and many-hued 
meadows shall he not believe, who knoweth the fickly faint- 
hearted human species! 

Could they do otherwise, then would they also will other- 
wise. The half-and-half spoil every whole. That leaves become 
withered, — ^what is there to lament about that! 

Let them go and fall away, O Zarathustra, and do not 
lament! Better even to blow amongst them with rustling 
winds, — 

— ^Blow amongst those leaves, O Zarathustra, that every- 
thing withered may run away from thee the faster! — 

'*We have again become pious” — ^so do those apostates con- 
fess; and some of them are still too pusillanimous thus to 


Unto them I look into the eye, — before them I say it unto 
their face and unto the blush on their cheeks: Ye are those who 
again pray! 

It is however a shame to pray! Not for all, but for thee, and 
me, and whoever hath his conscience in his head. For thee 
it is a shame to pray! 

Thou knowest it well : the faint-hearted devil in thee, which 
would fain fold its arms, and place its hands in its bosom, and 
take it easier: — ^this faint-hearted devil persuadeth thee that 
"there h a God!” 

Thereby, however, dost thou belong to the light-dreading 
type, to whom light never permitteth repose: now must thou 
daily thrust thy head deeper into obscurity and vapour! 

And verily, thou choosest the hour well : for just now do the 
nocturnal birds again fly abroad. The hour hath come for all 
light-dreading people, the vesper hour and leisure hour, when 
they do not — "take leisure.” 

I hear it and smell it: it hath come — ^tiheir hour for hunt and 
procession, not indeed for a wild hunt, but for a tame, lame, 
snuffling, soft-treaders’, soft-prayers’ hunt, — 

— ^For a hunt after susceptible simpletons: all mouse-traps 
for the heart have again been set! And whenever I lift a cur- 
tain, a night-moth rusheth out of it. 

Did it perhaps squat there along with another night-moth? 
For everywhere do I smell small concealed communities; and 
wherever there ate closets there are new devotees therein, and 
the atmosphere of devotees. 

They sit for long evenings beside one another, and say: "Let 
xis again become like little children and say, 'good God!’ ” — 
ruined in mouths and stomachs by the pious confectioners. 

Or they look for long evenings at a crafty, lurking cross- 



Spider, that preacheth prudence to the spiders themselves, and 
teacheth that ''under crosses it is good for cobweb-spinning!” 

Or they sit all day at swamps with angle-rods, and on that 
account think themselves profound; but whoever fisheth where 
there are no fish, I do not even call him superficial! 

Or they learn in godly-gay style to play the harp with a 
hymn-poet, who would fain harp himself into the heart of 
young girls: — ^for he hath tired of old girls and their praises. 

Or they learn to shudder with a learned semi-madcap, who 
waiteth in darkened rooms for spirits to come to him — ^and 
the spirit runneth away entirely! 

Or they listen to an old roving howl- and growl-piper, who 
hath learned from the sad winds the sadness of sounds; now 
pipeth he as the wind, and preacheth sadness in sad strains. 

And some of them have even become night-watchmen: they 
know now how to blow horns, and go about at night and 
awaken old things which have long fallen asleep. 

Five words about old things did I hear yesternight at the 
garden- wall: they came from such old, sorrowful, arid night- 

"For a father he careth not sufliciently for his children: 
human fathers do this better!” — 

"He is too old! He now careth no more for his children,” — 
answered the other night-watchman. 

''Haih he then children? No one can prove it unless he him- 
self prove it! I have long wished that he would for once prove 
it thoroughly.” 

"Prove? As if he had ever proved anything! Proving is diffi- 
cult to him; he layeth great stress on one’s believing him.” 

"Ay! Ay! Belief saveth him; belief in him. That is the way 
with old people! So it is with us also!” — 


— ^Thxis Spake to each other the two old night-watchmen and 
light-scarers, and tooted thereupon sorrowfully on their 
horns: so did it happen yesternight at the garden-wall. 

To me, however, did the heart writhe with laughter, and 
was like to break; it knew not where to go, and sunk into the 

Verily, it will be my death yet — ^to dioke with laughter when 
I see asses drunken, and hear night-watchmen thus doubt 
about God. 

Hath the time not long since passed for all such doubts? 
Who may nowadays awaken such old slumbering, light-shun- 
ning things! 

With the old Deities hath it long since come to an end: — 
and verily, a good joyful Deity-end had they! 

They did not **begloom’" themselves to death — ^that do 
people fabricate! On tihe contrary, they — laughed themselves 
to death once on a time! 

That took place when the ungodliest utterance came from a 
God himself — ^the utterance: ''There is but one God! Thou 
shalt have no other gods before me!'’ — 

— ^An old grim-beard of a God, a jealous one, forgot him- 
self in such wise: — 

And all the gods then laughed, and shook upon their 
thrones, and exdaimed: "Is it not just divinity that there are 
gods, but no God?” 

He that hath an ear let him hear. — 

Thus talked Zarathustra in the city he loved, which is sur- 
named "The Pied Cow.” For from here he had but two days 
to travel to reach once more his cave and his animals; his soul, 
however, rejoiced unceasingly on account of the nighness of 
his return home. 



jj. The Return Home 

O lonesomeness! my home, lonesomeness! Too long have I 
lived wildly in wild remoteness, to return to thee without tears! 

Now threaten me with the j&nger as mothers threaten; now 
smile upon me as mothers smile; now say just: “Who was it 
that like a whirlwind once rushed away from me? — 

— Who when departing called out: Too long have I sat 
with lonesomeness; there have I unlearned silence!' That hast 
thou learned now — ^surely? 

O Zarathustra, everything do I know; and that thou wert 
more forsaken amongst the many, thou unique one, than thou 
ever wert with me! 

One thing is forsakenness, another matter is lonesomeness: 
that hast thou now learned! And that amongst men thou wilt 
ever be wild and strange: 

— Wild and strange even when they love thee: for above all 
they want to be treated indulgently! 

Here, however, art thou at home and house with thyself; 
here canst thou utter everything, and unbosom all motives; 
nothing is here ashamed of concealed, congealed feelings. 

Here do all things come caressingly to thy talk and flatter 
thee: for they want to ride upon thy back. On every simile dost 
thou here ride to every truth. 

Uprightly and openly mayest thou here talk to all things: 
and verily, it soundeth as praise in their ears, for one to talk 
to all things — directly! 

Another matter, however, is forsakenness. For, dost thou re- 
member, O 2^rathustra? When thy bird screamed overhead, 


when thou stoodest in the forest, irresolute, ignorant where to 
go, beside a corpse: — 

— When thou spakest: 'Let mine animals lead me! More 
dangerous have I found it among men than among animals:’ 
— That was forsakenness! 

And dost thou remember, O Zaralhustra? When thou sattest 
in thine isle, a well of wine giving and granting amongst empty 
buckets, bestowing and distributing amongst the thirsty: 

— ^Until at last thou alone sattest thirsty amongst the 
drunken ones, and wailedst nightly: Is taking not more 
blessed than giving? And stealing yet more blessed than 
taking ?’ — That was forsakenness! 

And dost thou remember, O Zarathustra? When thy stillest 
hour came and drove thee forth from thyself, when with 
wicked whispering it said: 'Speak and succumb!’ — 

— ^When it disgusted thee with all thy waiting and silence, 
and discouraged thy humble courage: Th^a was forsaken- 

O lonesomeness! My home, lonesomeness! How blessedly 
and tenderly speaketh thy voice unto me! 

We do not question each other, we do not complain to each 
other; we go together openly through open doors. 

For ail is open with thee and dear; and even the hours run 
here on lighter feet. For in the dark, time weigheth heavier 
upon one than in the light. 

Here fly open unto me all beings’ words and word-cabinets: 
here all being wanteth to become words, here all becoming 
wanteth to learn of me how to talk. 

Down there, however — ^all talking is in vain! 'There, for- 
getting and passing-by are the best wisdom: that have I learned 



He who would understand everything in man must handle 
everything. But for that I have too clean hands. 

I do not like even to inhale their breath; alas! that I have 
lived so long among their noise and bad breaths! 

O blessed stillness around me! O pure odours around me! 
How from a deep breast this stillness fetcheth pure breath! 
How it hearkenedi, this blessed stillness! 

But down there — ^there speaketh everything, there is every- 
thing misheard. If one announce one's wisdom with bells, the 
shopmen in the market-place will out-jingle it with pennies! 

Everything among them talketh; no one knoweth any longer 
how to understand. Everything falleth into the water; nothing 
falleth any longer into deep wells. 

Everything among them talketh, nothing succeedeth any 
longer and accomplisheth itself. Everything caddeth, but who 
will still sit quietly on the nest and hatch eggs.^ 

Everything among them talketh, everything is out-talked. 
And that which yesterday was still too hard for time itself and 
its tooth, hangeth today, outchamped and outchewed, from 
the mouths of the men of today. 

Everything among them talketh, everything is betrayed. And 
what was once called the secret and secrecy of profound souls, 
belongeth to-day to the street-trumpeters and other butterflies. 

O human hubbub, thou wonderful thing! Thou noise in 
dark streets! Now art thou again behind me: — ^my greatest 
danger lieth behind me! 

In indulging and pitying lay ever my greatest danger; and 
all human hubbub wisheth to be indulged and tolerated. 

With suppressed truths, with fool’s hand and befooled 
heart, and rich in petty lies of pity: — ^thus have I ever lived 
among men. 

2o6 thus spake zarathustra 

Disguised did I sit amongst them, ready to misjudge myself 
that I might endure them, and willingly saying to myself; 
"Thou fool, thou dost not know men!*’ 

One unleameth men when one liveth amongst them; there 
is too much foreground in all men — ^what can far-seeing, far- 
longing eyes do there! 

And, fool that I was, when they misjudged me, I indulged 
them on that account more than myself, being habitually hard 
on myself, and often even taking revenge on myself for the 

Stung all over by poisonous flies, and hollowed like the 
stone by many drops of wickedness: thus did I sit among them, 
and still said to myself: "Innocent is ever3rthing petty of its 

Especially did I find those who call themselves "the good,” 
the most poisonous flies; they sting in all innocence, they lie 
in all innocence; how could they — ^be just towards me! 

He who liveth amongst the good — ^pity teacheth him to lie. 
Pity maketh stifling air for all free souls. For the stupidity of 
the good is unfathomable. 

To conceal myself and my riches — that did I learn down 
there: for every one did I still find poor in spirit. It was the lie 
of my pity, that I knew in every one. 

— ^That I saw and scented in every one, what was enough of 
spirit for him, and what was too much! 

Their stiff wise men: I call them wise, not stiff — ^thus did I 
learn to slur over words. 

The grave-diggers dig for themselves diseases. Under old 
rubbish rest bad vapours. One should not stir up the marsh. 
One should live on mountains. 

With blessed nostrils do I again breathe mountain-freedom. 



Freed at last is my nose from the smell of all human hubbub! 

With sharp breezes tickled, as with sparkling wine, sneezeth 
my soul — ^sneezeth, and shoutetii self-congratulatingly: 
"Health to thee!” 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

The Three Evil Things 


In my dream, in my last morning-dream, I stood today on a 
promontory — ^beyond the world; I held a pair of scales, and 
weighed the world. 

Alas, that the rosy dawn came too early to me: she glowed 
me awake, the jealous one! Jealoxis is she always of the glows of 
my morning-dream. 

Measurable by him who hath time, weighable by a good 
weigher, attainable by strong pinions, divinable by divine nut- 
crackers: thus did my dream find the world: — 

My dream, a bold sailor, half-ship, half-hurricane, silent as 
the butterfly, impatient as the falcon: how had it the patience 
and leisure to-day for world-weighing! 

Did my wisdom perhaps speak secretly to it, my laughing, 
wide-awake day-wisdom, which modcefli at all "infinite 
worlds*’? For it saith: "Where force is, there becometh number 
the master: it hath more force.*^ 

How confidently did my dream contemplate this finite 

208 thus spake zarathustra 

world, not new-fangledly, not old-fangledly, not timidly, not 
entreatingly: — 

— ^As if a big round apple presented itself to my hand, a 
ripe golden apple, with a coolly-soft, velvety skin: — ^thus did 
the world present itself unto me: — 

— ^As if a tree nodded unto me, a broad-branched, strong- 
willed tree, curved as a recline and a foot-stool for weary 
travellers : thus did the world stand on my promontory: — 

— ^As if delicate hands carried a casket towards me — ^a casket 
open for the delectation of modest adoring eyes: thus did the 
world present itself before me today: — 

— ^Not riddle enough to scare human love from it, not solu- 
tion enough to put to sleep human wisdom: — 2l humanly good 
thing was the world to me to-day, of which such bad things are 

How I thank my morning-dream that I thus at today s 
dawn, weighed the world! As a humanly good thing did it 
come unto me, this dream and heart-comforter! 

And that I may do the like by day, and imitate and copy its 
best, now will I put the three worst things on the scales, and 
weigh them humanly well. — 

He who taught to bless taught also to curse: what are the 
three best cursed things in the world? These will I put on the 

Voluptuousness, passion for power, and selfishness: these 
three things have hitherto been best cursed, and have been in 
worst and falsest repute — ^these three things will I weigh 
humanly well. 

Well! here is my promontory, and there is the sea — it 
rolleth hither unto me, shaggily and f awningly, the old, faith- 
ful, hundred-headed dog-monster that I love! — 

Well! Here will I hold the scales over the weltering sea: and 



also a witness do I choose to look on — thee, the anchorite-tree, 
thee, the strong-odoured, broad-arched tree that I lovel — 

On what bridge goeth the now to the hereafter? By what 
constraint doth the high stoop to the low? And what enjoineth 
even the highest still — to grow upwards? — 

Now stand the scales poised and at rest: three heavy ques- 
tions have I thrown in; three heavy answers carrieth the other 

Voluptuousness: unto all hair-shirted despisers of the body, 
a sting and stake; and, cursed as **the world,*’ by all back- 
worldsmen: for it mocketh and befooleth all erring, misiix- 
ferring teachers. 

Voluptuousness: to the rabble, the slow j6re at which it is 
burnt; to all wormy wood, to all stinking rags, the prepared 
heat and stew furnace. 

Voluptuousness: to free hearts, a thing innocent and free^ 
the garden-happiness of the earth, all the future’s thanks-over- 
flow to the present. 

Voluptuousness: only to the withered a sweet poison; to 
the lion-willed, however, the great cordial, and the reverently 
saved wine of wines. 

Voluptuousness: the great symbolic happiness of a higher 
happiness and highest hope. For to many is marriage promised, 
and more than marriage, — 

— ^To many that are more unknown to each other than man 
and woman: — ^and who hath fully imderstood unknoton 

to each other are man and woman! 

Voluptuousness: — ^but I will have hedges around my 


thoughts, and even around my words, lest swine and liber- 
tine should break into my gardens! — 

Passion for power: the glowing scourge of the hardest of 
the heart-hard; the cruel torture reserved for the cruellest 
themselves; the gloomy flame of living pyres. 

Passion for power: the wicked gadfly which is mounted on 
the vainest peoples; the scomer of all uncertain virtue; which 
rideth on every horse and on every pride. 

Passion for power: the earthquake which breaketh and up- 
breaketh all that is rotten and hoUow; the rolling, rumbling, 
punitive demolisher of whited sepulchres; the flashing inter- 
rogative-sign beside premature answers. 

Passion for power: before whose glance man creepeth and 
croucheth and drudgeth, and becometh lower than the serpent 
and the swine: — ^until at last great contempt crieth out of 
him — 

Passion for power: the terrible teacher of great contempt, 
which preacheth to their face to cities and empires: '*Away 
with thee!'* — ^until a voice crieth out of themselves: "Away 
with meP^ 

Passion for power: which, however, mounteth alluringly 
even to the pure and lonesome, and up to self-satisfied eleva- 
tions, glowing like a love that painteth purple felicities allur- 
ingly on earthly heavens. 

Passion for power: but who would call it passion, when the 
height longeth to stoop for power! Verily, nothing sick or dis- 
eased is there in such longing and descending! 

That the lonesome height may not forever remain lone- 
some and self-suj£cing; that the mountains may come to the 
valleys and the winds of the heights to the plains: — 

Oh, who could find the right prenomen and honouring name 



for such longing! "Bestowing virtue” — ^thus did Zarafchustra 
once name the unnamable. 

And then it happened also, — ^and verily, it happened for die 
first time! — ^that his word blessed selfishnessj the wholesome, 
healthy selfishness, that springeth from the powerful soul: — 

— ^From the powerful soul, to which the high body apper- 
taineth, the handsome, triumphing, refreshing body, around 
which everything becometh a mirror: 

— ^The pliant, persuasive body, the dancer, whose symbol 
and epitome is the self-enjoying soul. Of such bodies and souls 
the self-enjoyment calleth itself "virtue.” 

With its words of good and bad doth such self-enjoyment 
shelter itself as with sacred groves; with the names of its hap- 
piness doth it banish from itself ever3^ing contemptible. 

Away from itself doth it banish everything cowardly; it 
saith: "Bad — that is cowardly!” Contemptible seem to it the 
ever-solicitous, the sighing, the complaining, and whoever 
pick up the most trifling advantage. 

It despiseth also all bitter-sweet wisdom: for verily, there is 
also wisdom that bloometh in the dark, a night-shade wisdom, 
which ever sigheth: "All is vain!” 

Shy distrust is regarded by it as base, and every one who 
wanteth oaths instead of looks and hands: also all over-dis- 
trustful wisdom, — ^for such is the mode of cowardly souls. 

Baser still it regardeth the obsequious, doggish one, who 
immediately lieth on his badk, the submissive one; and there is 
also wisdom that is submissive, and doggish, and pious, and 

Hateful to it altogether, and a loathing, is he who will never 
defend himself, he who swalloweth down poisonous spittle 
and bad looks, the all-too-patient one, the all-endurer, the all- 
satisfied one: for that is the mode of slaves. 



Whether they be servile before gods and divine spurnings, 
or before men and stupid human opinions : at all kinds of slaves 
doth it spit, this blessed selfishness! 

Bad: thus doth it call all that is spirit-broken, and sordidly- 
servile — constrained, blinking eyes, depressed hearts, and the 
false submissive style, which kisseth with broad cowardly lips. 

And spurious wisdom: so doth it call all the wit that slaves, 
and hoary-headed and weary ones affect; and especially all the 
cunning, spurious-witted, curious-witted foolishness of priests! 

The spurious wise, however, all the priests, the world-weary, 
and those whose souls are of feminine and servile nature— oh, 
how hath their game all along abused selfishness! 

And precisely that was to be virtue and was to be called 
virtue — ^to abuse selfishness! And "selfless” — ^so did they wish 
themselves with good reason, all those world-weary cowards 
and cross-spiders! 

But to all those cometh now the day, the change, the sword 
of judgment, the great noontide: then shall many things be 

And he who proclaimeth the ego wholesome and holy, and 
selfishness blessed, verily, he, the prognosticator, speaketh also 
what he knoweth: ^^Behold, it cometh ^ it is night, the great 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



jj. The Spirit of Gravity 


My mouthpiece — is of the people: too coarsely and cordially 
do I talk for Angora rabbits. And still stranger soundeth my 
word unto all inlc-fish and pen-foxes. 

My hand — is a fooFs hand: woe unto all tables and walls, 
and whatever hath room for f ooFs sketching, fool’s scrawling! 

My foot — ^is a horse-foot; therewith do I trample and trot 
over stick and stone, in the fields up and down, and am be- 
devilled with delight in all fast racing. 

My stomach — ^is surely an eagle’s stomach? For it preferred! 
lamb’s flesh. Certainly it is a bird’s stomach. 

Nourished with innocent things, and with few, ready and 
impatient to fly, to fly away — ^that is now my nature: why 
should there not be something of bird-nature therein! 

And especially that I am hostile to the spirit of gravity, 
that is bird-nature: — ^verily, deadly hostile, supremely hostile 
originally hostile! Oh, whither hath my hostility not flown 
and misflown! 

Thereof could I sing a song and sing it: though I 

be alone in an empty house, and must sing it to mine own ears. 

Other singers are there, to be sure, to whom only the full 
house maketh the voice soft, the hand eloquent, the eye ex- 
pressive, the heart wakeful : — ^those do I not resemble, — 




He who one day teadieth men to fly will have shifted all 
landmarks; to him will all landmarks themselves fly into the 
air; the earth will he christen anew — as "the light body.” 

The ostrich runneth faster than the fastest horse, but it also 
thrusteth its head heavily into the heavy earth: thus is it with 
the man who cannot yet fly. 

Heavy unto him are earth and life, and so mtteth the spirit 
of gravity! But he who would become light, and be a bird, 
must love lumself : — ^thus do I teach. 

Not, to be sure, with the love of the sick and infected, for 
with them stinketh even self-love! 

One must learn to love oneself — thus do I teach — with a 
wholesome and healthy love: that one may endiure to be with 
oneself, and not go roving about. 

Such roving about christeneth itself "brotherly love”; with 
these words hath there hitherto been the best lying and dis- 
sembling, and especially by those who have been burdensome 
to every one. 

And verily, it is no commandment for today and tomorrow 
to /earn to love oneself. Rather is it of all arts the finest, 
subtlest, last and patientest. 

For to its possessor is all possession well concealed, and of all 
treasure-pits one’s own is last excavated — so causetih the spirit 
of gravity. 

Almost in the cradle are we apportioned with heavy words 
and worths: "good” and "evil” — ^so calleth itself this dowry. 
For the sake of it we are forgiven for living. 

And therefore suffereth one little children to come unto one, 



to forbid them betimes to love themselves — ^so causeth the 
spirit of gravity. 

And we — we bear loyally what is apportioned xmto us, on 
hard shoulders, over rugged mountains! And when we sweat, 
tlien do people say to us: "Yea, life is hard to bear!” 

But man himself only is hard to bear! The reason thereof 
is that he carrieth too many extraneous tilings on his shoul- 
ders. Like the camel kneeleth he down, and letteth himself be 
well laden. 

Especially the strong load-bearing man in whom reverence 
resideth. Too many extraneous heavy words and worths 
loadeth he upon himself — ^then seemeth life to him a desert! 

And verily! Many a thing also that is our own is hard to 
bear! And many internal things in man are like the oyster — 
repulsive and slippery and hard to grasp; — 

So that an elegant shell, with elegant adornment, must plead 
for them. But this art also must one leam: to have a shell, and 
a fine appearance, and sagacious blindness! 

Again, it deceiveth about many things in man, that many a 
shell is poor and pitiable, and too much of a shell. Much con- 
cealed goodness and power is neva: dreamt of; the choicest 
dainties find no tasters! 

Women know that, the choicest of them: a little fatter a 
little leaner — oh, how much fate is in so little! 

Man is difficult to discover, and imto himself most difficult 
of all; often lieth the spirit concerning the soul. So causeth the 
spirit of gravity. 

He, however, hath discovered himsdf who saitii: This is my 
good and evil: therewith hath he silenced the mole and the 
dwarf, who say: "Good for all, evil for all.” 

Verily, neither do I like those who call everything good, and 
this world the best of all. Those do I call the all-satisfied. 

2i6 thus spake zarathustra 

All-satisfiedness, which knoweth how to taste everything, — 
that is not the best taste! I honour the refractory, fastidious 
tongues and stomachs, which have learned to say 'T' and 
’Tea" and "Nay/' 

To chew and digest everything, however — ^that is the genu- 
ine swine-nature! Ever to say Ye-a — ^that hath only the ass 
learned, and those like it! — 

Deep yellow and hot red — ^so wanteth my taste — ^it mixeth 
blood with all colours. He, however, who whitewasheth his 
house, betrayeth unto me a whitewashed soul. 

With mummies, some fall in love; others with phantoms: 
both alike hostile to all flesh and blood — oh, how repugnant 
are both to my taste! For I love blood. 

And there will I not reside and abide where every one 
spitteth and speweth: that is now my taste, — ^rather would I 
live amongst thieves and perjurers. Nobody carrieth gold in 
his mouth. 

Still more repugnant unto me, however, are all lick-spittles; 
and the most repugnant animal of man that I found, did I 
christen ^"parasite’*: it would not love, and would yet live by 

Unhappy do I call all those who have only one choice: 
either to become evil beasts, or evil beast-tamers. Amongst such 
would I not build my tabernacle. 

Unhappy do I also call those who have ever to — ^they 

are repugnant to my taste — all the toll-gatherers and traders, 
and kings, and other landkeepers and shopkeepers. 

Verily, I learned waiting also, and thoroughly so, — ^but only 
waiting for myself. And above all did I learn standing and 
walking and running and leaping and climbing and dancing. 

This however is my teaching: he who wisheth one day to fly. 


must first leam standing and walking and running and climb- 
ing and dancing: — one doth not £[7 into flying! 

With rope-ladders learned I to reach many a window, with 
nimble legs did I climb high masts: to sit on high masts of 
perception seemed to me no small bliss; — 

— ^To flicker like small flames on high masts: a small light, 
certainly, but a great comfort to cast-away sailors and ship- 
wrecked ones! 

By divers ways and wendings did I arrive at my tmth; not 
by one ladder did I mount to the height where mine eye roveth 
into my remoteness. 

And unwillingly only did I ask my way — that was always 
coxmter to my taste! Rather did I question and test the ways 

A testing and a questioning hath been all my travelling: — 
and verily, one must also leam to answer such questioning! 
That, however, — ^is my taste: 

— ^Neither a good nor a bad taste, but my taste, of which I 
have no longer either shame or secrecy. 

''This — ^is now my way, — where is yours?” Thus did I 
answer those who asked me "the way.” For the way — it doth 
not exist! 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



^6. Old and New Tables 


Here do I sit and wait, old broken tables around me and 
also new half -written tables. When cometh mine hour? 

— ^The hour of my descent, of my down-going: for once 
more will I go unto men. 

For that hour do I now wait: for first must the signs come 
unto me that it is mine hour — ^namely, the laughing lion with 
the flock of doves. 

Meanwhile do I talk to myself as one who hath time. No one 
telleth me anything new, so I tell myself mine own story. 

When I came imto men, then found I them resting on an 
old infatuation: all of them thought they had long known 
what was good and bad for men. 

An old wearisome business seemed to them all discourse 
about virtue; and he who wished to sleep well spake of "good'* 
and '*bad'* ere retiring to rest 

This somnolence did I disturb when I taught that no one 
yet knoweth what is good and bad: — ^unless it be the creating 

— ^It is he, however, who createth man’s goal, and giveth to 
the earth its meaning and its future: he only effecteth it that 
aught is good or bad. 

And I bade them upset their old academic chairs, and 



wherever that old infatuation had sat; I bade them laugh at 
their great moralists, their saints, their poets, and their 

At their gloomy sages did I bid them laugh, and whoever 
had sat admonishing as a black scarecrow on the tree of life. 

On their great grave-highway did I seat myself, and even 
beside the carrion and vultures — ^and I laughed at all their 
bygone and its mellow decaying glory. 

Verily, like penitential preachers and fools did I cry wrath 
and shame on all their greatness and smallness. Oh, that their 
best is so very small! Oh, that their worst is so very small! 
Thus did I laugh. 

Thus did my wise longing, born in the mountains, cry and 
laugh in me; a wild wisdom, verily! — ^my great pinion- 
rustling longing. 

And oft did it carry me off and up and away and in the midst 
of laughter; then flew I quivering like an arrow with sun- 
intoxicated rapture: 

— Out into distant futures, which no dream hath yet seen, 
into warmer souths than ever sculptor conceived, — ^where gods 
in their dancing are ashamed of all clothes : 

(That I may speak in parables and halt and stammer like the 
poets: and verily I am ashamed that I have still to be a poet!) 

Where all becoming seemed to me dancing of gods, and 
wantoning of gods, and the world unloosed and unbridled and 
fleeing back to itself: — 

— ^As an eternal self-fleeing and re-seeking of one another 
of many gods, as the blessed self-contradicting, recommun- 
ing, and refratemising with one another of many gods: — 

Where all time seemed to me a blessed mockery of moments, 
where necessity was freedom itself, which played happily with 
the goad of freedom: — 



Where I also found again mine old devil and arch-enem7, 
the spirit of gravit7, and all that it aeated: constraint, law, 
necessity and consequence and purpose and will and good and 
evil: — 

For must there not be that which is danced overt danced be- 
yond? Must there not, for the sake of the nimble, the nimblest, 
— ^be moles and clumsy dwarfs? — 


There was it also where I picked up from the path the word 
"'Superman,'’ and that man is something that must be sur- 

— That man is a bridge and not a goal — ^rejoicing over his 
noontides and evenings, as advances to new rosy dawns: 

— ^The Zarathustra word of the great noontide, and what- 
ever else I have hung up over men like purple evening-after- 

Verily, also new stars did I make them see, along with new 
nights; and over cloud and day and night, did I spread out 
laughter like a gay-coloured canopy. 

I taught them all my poetisation and aspiration; to com- 
pose and collect into unity what is fragment in man, and riddle 
and fearful chance; — 

— ^As composer, riddle-reader, and redeemer of chance, did 
I teach them to create the future, and all that hath been — ^to re- 
deem by aeating. 

The past of man to redeem, and every 'Tt was” to transform, 
until the Will saith: *'But so did I will it! So shall I will it — 

— ^This did I call redemption; this alone taught I them to 
call redemption. 



Now do I await my redemption — ^that I may go unto them 
for the last time. 

For once more will I go unto men: amongst them will my 
sun set; in dying will I give them my choicest gift! 

From the sun did I learn this, when it goeth down, the 
exuberant one: gold doth it then pour into the sea, out of in- 
exhaustible riches, — 

— So that the poorest fisherman roweth even with golden 
oars! For this did I once see, and did not tire of weeping in 
beholding it. 

Like the sun will also Zarathustra go down: now sitteth he 
here and waiteth, old broken tables around him, and also new 
tables — half-written. 

Behold, here is a new table; but where are my brethren who 
will carry it with me to the valley and into hearts of flesh.^ — 

Thus demandeth my great love to the remotest ones: he not 
considerate of thy neighbour! Man is something that must be 

There are many divers ways and modes of surpassing: see 
thou thereto! But only a buffoon thinketh: "man can also be 

Surpass thyself even in thy neighbour: and a right which 
thou canst seize upon, shalt thou not allow to be given thee! 

What thou doest can no one do to thee again. Lo, there is no 

He who cannot command hinoself shall obey. And many a 
one can command himself, but still sorely lacketh self-obedi- 




Thus wisheth the type of noble souls: they desire to have 
noihing gratuitously, least of all, life. 

He who is of the populace wisheth to live gratuitously; we 
others, however, to whom life hath given itself — ^we are ever 
considering ti/hat we can best give in return! 

And verily, it is a noble dictum which saith: ”What life 
promiseth us, that promise will we keep — ^to life!” 

One should not wish to enjoy where one doth not contribute 
to the enjoyment. And one should not wish to enjoy! 

For enjoyment and innocence are the most bashful things. 
Neither like to be sought for. One should have them, — ^but one 
should rather for guilt and pain! — 


O my brethren, he who is a firstling is ever sacrificed. Now, 
however, are we firstlings! 

We all bleed on secret sacrificial altars, we all burn and 
broil in honour of ancient idols. 

Our best is still young: this exciteth old palates. Our flesh 
is tender, our skin is only lambs' skin: — ^how could we not 
excite old idol-priests! 

In ourselves dwelleth he still, the old idol-priest, who 
broileth our best for his banquet. Ah, my brethren, how could 
firstlings fail to be sacrifices! 

But so wisheth our type; and I love those who do not wish 
to preserve themselves, the down-going ones do I love with 
mine entire love: for they go beyond. — 




To be true — ^that can few be! And he who ran, will not! 
Least of all, however, can the good be true. 

Oh, those good ones! Good men never speak the truth. For 
the spirit, thus to be good, is a malady. 

They yield, those good ones, they submit themselves; their 
heart repeateth, their soul obeyeth: he, however, who ob^eth, 
doth not listen to himself I 

All that is called evil by the good, must come together in 
order that one truth may be bom. O my brethren, are ye also 
evil enough for this tmth? 

The daring venture, the prolonged distrust, the cruel Nay, 
the tedium, the cutting-into-the-quick — ^how seldom do these 
come together! Out of such seed, however — ^is truth produced! 

Beside the bad conscience hath hitherto grown ^ knowl- 
edge! Break up, break up, ye discerning ones, the old tables! 


When the water hath planks, when gangways and railings 
o’erspan the stream, verily, he is not believed who then saith: 
"AU is in flux.” 

But even the simpletons contradict him. "What?” say the 
simpletons, "all in flux? Planks and railings are still over the 

"Over the stream all is stable, all the values of things, the 
bridges and bearings, all 'good’ and 'evil’: these are all 


Cometh, however, the hard winter, the stream-tamer, then 
learn even the wittiest distmst, and verily, not only the simple- 
tons then say: ''Should not everything — stand stzll?^^ 

"Fundamentally standeth everything still'* — ^that is an ap- 
propriate winter doctrine, good cheer for an unproductive 
period, a great comfort for winter-sleepers and fireside- 

"Fundamentally standeth everything still" — : but contrary 
thereto, preacheth the thawing wind! 

The thawing wind, a bullock, which is no ploughing bullock 
— z. furious bullock, a destroyer, which with angry horns 
breaketh the ice! The ice however hreaketh gangwaysl 

O my brethren, is not everything at present in flux? Have 
not all railings and gangways fallen into the water? Who 
would still hold on to "good" and "evil**? 

"Woe to us! Hail to us! The thawing wind bloweth!" — 
Thus preach, my brethren, through all the streets! 


There is an old illusion — ^it is called good and evil. Around 
soothsayers and astrologers hath hitherto revolved the orbit of 
this illusion. 

Once did one believe in sootiisayers and astrologers; and 
therefore did one believe, "Everything is fate; thou shalt, for 
thou must!*’ 

Then again did one distrust all soothsayers and astrologers; 
and therefore did one believe, "Everything is freedom: thou 
canst, for thou wiliest!** 

O my brethren, concerning the stars and the future there 



hath hitherto been only illusion, and not knowledge; and 
therefore concerning good and evil there hath hitherto been 
only illusion and not knowledge! 


“Thou shalt not rob! Thou shalt not slay!” — ^such prec^ts 
were once called holy; before them did one bow the Imee and 
the head, and take off one’s shoes. 

But I ask you: Where have there ever been better robbers 
and slayers in the world than such holy precepts? 

Is there not even in all life — ^rcrf>bing and slaying? And for 
such prec^ts to be called holy, was not truth itself therdsy — 

— ^Or was it a sermon of death that called holy what contra- 
dicted and dissuaded from life? — my brethren, break up, 
break up for me the old tables! 


It is my sympathy with all the past that I see it is aban- 
doned, — 

— Abandoned to the favour, the spirit and the madness of 
every generation that cometh, and reinterpreteth all that hath 
been as its bridge! 

A great potentate might arise, an artful prodigy, who with 
approval and disapproval could strain and constrain ail the 
past, until it became for him a bridge, a harbinger, a herald, 
and a cock-crowing. 



This however is the other danger, and mine other sympathy; 

- — ^he who is of the populace, his thoughts go back to his grand- 
father, — ^with his grandfather, however, doth time cease. 

Thus is all the past abandoned: for it might some day hap- 
pen for the populace to become master, and drown all time in 
shallow waters. 

Therefore, O my brethren, a new nobility is needed, which 
shall be the adversary of all populace and potentate rule, and 
shall inscribe anew the word 'noble*' on new tables. 

For many noble ones are needed, and many kinds of noble 
ones, jot a new nobility! Or, as I once said in parable: “That is 
just divinity, that there are gods, but no God!*' 


O my brethren, I consecrate you and point you to a new 
nobility: ye shall become procreators and cultivators and 
sowers of the future; — 

— ^Verily, not to a nobility which ye could purchase like 
traders with traders* gold; for little worth is all that hath its 

Let it not be your honour henceforth whence ye come, but 
whither ye go! Your Will and your feet which seek to surpass 
you — let these be your new honour! 

Verily, not that ye have served a prince — of what account 
are princes now! — ^nor that ye have become a bulwark to that 
which standeth, that it may stand more firmly. 

Not that your family have become courtly at courts, and that 
ye have learned — ^gay-coloured, like the flamingo — ^to stand 
long hours in shallow pools: 

(For ability-to-stmd is a merit in courtiers; and all cour- 



tiers believe that unto blessedness after death pertaineth — pet- 

Nor even that a Spirit called Holy, led your forefathers into 
promised lands, which I do not praise: for where the worst of 
all trees grew — ^the cross, — ^in that land there is nothing to 
praise! — 

— ^And verily, wherever this "Holy Spirit" led its knights, 
always in such campaigns did — goats and geese, and wry- 
heads and foremost ! — 

O my brethren, not backward shall your nobility gaze, but 
outward! Exiles shall ye be from all fatherlands and forefather- 

Your children's land shall ye love: let this love be your new 
nobility, — ^the undiscovered in the remotest seas! For it do I bid 
your sails search and search! 

Unto your children shall ye make amends for being the chil- 
dren of your fathers: all the past shall ye thus redeem! This 
new table do I place over you! 


"Why should one live? All is vain! To live — that is to 
thresh straw; to live — ^that is to bum oneself and yet not get 
warm." — 

Such ancient babbling still passeth for "wisdom"; because 
it is old, however, and smelleth mustily, therefore is it the more 
honoured. Even mould ennobleth. — 

Children might thus speak: they shun the fire because it hath 
burnt them! There is much childishness in the old books of 



And he who ever ''thresheth straw/' why should he be 
allowed to rail at threshing! Such a fool one would have to 

Such persons sit down to the table and bring nothing with 
them, not even good hunger: — ^and then do they rail: '*A11 is 

But to eat and drink well, my brethren, is verily no vain art! 
Break up, break up for me the tables of the never-joyous ones! 


*To the dean are all things clean” — ^thus say the people. I, 
however, say unto you: To the swine all things become swinish! 

Therefore preach the visionaries and bowed-heads (whose 
hearts are also bowed down) : **The world itself is a filthy 

For these are all undean spirits; espedally those, however, 
who have no peace or rest, unless they see the world from the 
backside — ^the badcworldsmen! 

To those do I say it to the face, although it sound unpleas- 
antly: the world resembleth man, in that it hath a backside, — 
so much is true! 

There is in the world much jfilth: so much is true! But the 
world itself is not therefore a filthy monster! 

There is wisdom in the fact that much in the world smelleth 
badly: loathing itself aeateth wings, and fountain-divining 

In the best there is still something to loathe; and the best is 
still something that must be surpassed! — 

O my brethren, there is much wisdom in the fact that much 
filth is in the world! — 




Such sayings did I hear pious backworldsmen speak to their 
consciences, and verily without wickedness or guile,'-- 
although there is nothing more guileful in the world, or more 

**Let the world be as it is! Raise not a finger against it!*' 

'Xet whoever will choke and stab and skin and scrape the 
people: raise not a finger against it! Thereby will they learn 
to renounce the world.” 

'*And thine own reason — ^this shalt thou thyself stifle and 
choke; for it is a reason of this world, — thereby wilt thou learn 
thyself to renounce the world.” — 

— Shatter, shatter, O my brethren, those old tables of the 
pious! Tatter the maxims of the world-maligners! — 


**He who leameth much unleameth all violent cravings” — 
that do people now whisper to one another in all the dark 

''Wisdom weaxieth, nothing is worth while; thou shalt not 
crave!” — ^this new table found I hanging even in the public 

Break up for me, O my brethren, break up also that new 
table! The weary-o’-the-world put it up, and the preachers of 
death and the jailer: for lo, it is also a sermon for slavery: — 

Because they learned badly and not the best, and everything 
too early and everything too fast; because they ate badly: from 
thence hath resulted their rained stomach; — 


— For a mined stomach, is their spirit: /V persuadeth to 
death! For verily, my brethren, the spirit is a stomach! 

Life is a well of delight, but to him in whom the ruined 
stomach speaketh, the father of affliction, all fountains are 

To discern: that is delight to the lion-willed! But he who 
hath become weary, is himself merely 'willed”; with him play 
all the waves. 

And such is always the nature of weak men: they lose them- 
selves on their way. And at last asketh their weariness: "Why 
did we ever go on the way? All is indifferent!” 

To them soundeth it pleasant to have preached in their ears : 
"Nothing is worth while! Ye shall not will!” That, however, 
is a sermon for slavery. 

O my brethren, a fresh blustering wind cometh Zarathustra 
unto all way-weary ones; many noses will he yet make sneeze! 

Even through walls bloweth my free breath, and into 
prisons and imprisoned spirits! 

Willing emancipateth: for willing is creating: so do I teach. 
And only for creating shall ye learn! 

And also the learning shall ye learn only from me, the 
learning well! — ^He who hath ears let him hear! 


There standeth the boat — ^thither goeth it over, perhaps into 
vast nothingness — ^but who willeth to enter into this "Per- 

None of you want to enter into the death-boat! How should 
ye then be world-weary ones! 

World-weary ones! And have not even withdrawn from the 



earth! Eager did I ever find you for the earth, amorous still of 
your own earth-weariness! 

Not in vain doth your lip hang down: — a small worldly 
wish still sitteth thereon! And in your eye — ^fioateth there not 
a cloudlet of unforgotten earthly bliss? 

There are on the earth many good inventions, some useful, 
some pleasant: for their sake is the earth to be loved. 

And many such good inventions are there, that they are like 
woman’s breasts: useful at the same time, and pleasant. 

Ye world-weary ones, however! Ye earth-iiers! You, shall 
one beat with stripes! With stripes shall one again make you 
sprightly limbs. 

For if ye be not invalids, or decrepit creatures, of whom the 
earth is weary, then are ye sly sloths, or dainty, sneaking 
pleasure<ats. And if ye will not again run gaily, then shall ye 
— ^pass away! 

To the incurable shall one not seek to be a physician: thus 
teacheth Zarathustra: — ^so shall ye pass away! 

But more courage is needed to make an end than to make a 
new verse: that do all physicians and poets know well. — 


O my brethren, there are tables which weariness framed, 
and tables which slothfulness framed, corrupt slothfulness: 
although they speak similarly, they want to be heard dif- 
ferently. — 

See this languishing one! Only a span-breadth is he from 
his goal; but from weariness hath he lain down obstinately in 
the dust, this brave one! 

From weariness yawneth he at the path, at the earth, at the 


goal, and at himself: not a step furtiber will he go, — this 
brave one! 

Now gloweth the sun upon him, and the dogs lick at his 
sweat: but he lieth there in his obstinacy and preferreth to 
languish: — 

— span-breadth from his goal, to languish! Verily, ye will 
have to drag him into his heaven by the hair of his head — 
this hero! 

Better still that ye let him lie where he hath lain down, that 
sleep may come unto him, the comforter, with cooling patter- 

Let him lie, until of his own accord he awakeneth, — until of 
his own accord he repudiateth all weariness, and what weari- 
ness hath taught through him! 

Only, my brethren, see that ye scare the dogs away from 
him, the idle skulkers, and all the swarming vermin: — 

— ^AU the swarming vermin of the "cultured,” that — ^feast 
on the sweat of every hero! — 


I form drdes around me and holy boundaries; ever fewer 
ascend with me ever higher mountains: I build a mountain- 
range out of ever holier mountains. — 

But wherever ye would ascend witii me, O my brethren, take 
care lest a parasite ascend with you! 

A parasite: that is a reptile, a creeping, cringing reptile^ 
that trieth to fatten on your infirm and sore places. 

And this is its art: it divineth where ascending souls are 
weary, in your trouble and dej ection, in your sensitive modesty, 
doth it build its loathsome nest. 



Where ihe strong are weak, where the noble are all-too- 
gentle — ^there bnildeth it its loathsome nest; the parasite livetb 
wnere the great have small sore-places. 

What is the highest of all spedes of being, and what is the 
lowest? The parasite is the lowest spedes; he, however, who is 
of the highest spedes feedeth most parasites. 

For the soul which hath the longest ladder, and can go 
deepest down: how could there fail to be most parasites upon 

— ^The most comprdiensive soul, which can run and stray 
and rove furthest in itself; the most necessary soul, which out 
of ]of flingeth itsdf into chance: — 

— ^The soul in Being, which plungeth into Becoming; the 
possessing soiil, which seeketh to attain desire and longing:— 

— The soul fleeing from itself, which overtaketh itself in 
the widest circuit; the wisest soul, unto which folly speaketh 
most sweetly: — 

— ^The soul most self-loving, in which all tilings have tibeir 
current and coimter-current, their ebb and their flow: — ch, 
how could the loftiest soul fail to have the worst parasites? 

O my brethren, am I then cmel? But I say: What falleth, 
that shall one also push! 

Everything of today — ^it falleth, it decayeth; who would 
preserve it! But I — wish also to push it! 

Know ye the delight which roUeth stones into predpitous 
dqiths? — Those men of today, see just how they roll into my 


A prelude am I to better players, O my brethren! An 
example! Do according to mine example! 

And him whom ye do not teach to fly, teach I pray you — to 
fall faster ! — 


I love the brave: but it is not enough to be a swordsman, — 
one must also know whereon to use swordsmanship! 

And often is it greater bravery to keep quiet and pass by, 
that thereby one may reserve oneself for a worthier foe! 

Ye shall only have foes to be hated; but not foes to be 
despised: ye must be proud of your foes. Thus have I already 

For the worthier foe, O my brethren, shall ye reserve your- 
selves: therefore must ye pass by many a one, — 

— ^Especially many of the rabble, who din your ears with 
noise about people and peoples. 

Keep your qre clear of their For and Against! There is there 
much right, much wrong: he who looketh on becometh wroth. 

Therein viewing, therein hewing — ^they are the same thing: 
therefore depart into the forests and lay your sword to sleep! 

Go your ways! and let the people and peoples go theirs! — 
gloomy ways, verily, on which not a single hope glinteth any 

Let there the trader rule, where all that still glittereth is — 
traders’ gold. It is the time of kings no longer: that which 
now called! itself the people is unworthy of kings. 

See how these peoples themselves now do just like the 
traders: they pick up the smallest advantage out of all kinds of 



They lay lures for one another, they lure things out of one 
another, — ^that they call '*good neighbourliness.” O blessed 
remote period when a people said to itself: '1 will be — 
master over peoples!” 

For, my brethren, the best shall rule, the best also willeth 
to rule! And where the teaching is different, there — ^the best is 


If they had — ^bread for nothing, alas! for what would they 
cry! Their maintainment — ^that is their true entertainment; and 
they shall have it hard! 

Beasts of prey, are they: in their * working” — ^there is even 
plundering, in their "earning” — ^there is even over-reaching! 
Therefore shall they have it hard! 

Better beasts of prey shall they thus become, subtler, 
cleverer, more man-like: for man is the best beast of prqr. 

All the animals hath man already robbed of their virtues: 
that is why of all animals it hath been hardest for man. 

Only the birds are still beyond him. And if man should yet 
learn to fly, alas! to what height — would his rapacity fly! 


Thus woxild I have man and woman: fit for war, the one; 
fit for maternity, the other; both, however, fit for dancing with 
head and legs. 

And lost be the day to us in which a measure hath not been 
danced. And false be every truth which hath not had laughter 
along with it! 




Your marriage-arranging: see that it be not a bad arranging! 
Ye have arranged too hastily: so there follou/eth therefrom — 

And better marriage-breaking than marriage-bending, mar- 
riage-lying! — ^Thus spake a woman unto me: 'Indeed, I broke 
the marriage, but first did the marriage break — ^me!’’ 

The badly paired found I ever the most revengeful: ihey 
make every one suffer for it that they no longer run singly. 

On that account want I the honest ones to say to one an- 
other: "We love each other: let us s0& to it that we maintain 
our love! Or shall our pledging be blundering?” 

— "Give us a set term and a small marriage, that we may 
see if we are fit for the great marriage! It is a great matter 
always to be twain.” 

Thus do I counsel all honest ones; and what would be my 
love to the Superman, and to all that is to come, if I should 
counsel and speak otherwise! 

Not only to propagate yourselves onwards but upwards — 
thereto, O my brethren, may the garden of marriage help you! 


He who hath grown wise concerning old origins, lo, he will 
at last seek after the fountains of the future and new origins. — 
O my brethren, not long will it be imtil new peoples shall 
arise and new fountains shall rush down into new depths. 

For the earthquake — ^it choketh up many wells, it causeth 
much languishing: but it bringeth also to light inner powers 
and secrets. 



The earthquake disdoseth new fountains. In the earfliquake 
of old peoples new fountains burst forth. 

And whoever calleih out: "Lo, here is a wdl for many 
thirsty ones, one heart for many longing ones, one will for 
many instruments” : — around him collectelh a people, that is 
to say, many attempting ones. 

Who can command, who must obey — that is there ai* 
tempted! Ah, with what long sedking and solving and failing 
and learning and re-attempting! 

Human society: it is an attempt — ^so I teadi — a long seek- 
ing: it seeketh however the ruler! — 

— ^An attempt, my brethren! And no "contract”! Destroy, I 
pray you, destroy that word of the soft-hearted and half-and- 


O my brethren! With whom lieth the greatest danger to the 
whole human future.^ Is it not with the good and just? — 

— ^As those who say and feel in their hearts: "We already 
know what is good and just, we possess it also; woe to those 
who still seek thereafter!” 

And whatever harm the wicked may do, the harm of the 
good is the harmfulest harm! 

And whatever harm the world-maligners may do, the harm 
of the good is tfie harmfulest harm! 

O my brethren, into the hearts of the good and just looked 
some one once on a time, who said: “Th^ are die Pharisees.” 
But people did not understand him. 

The gcxxi and just themselves were not free to understand 
him; their spirit was imprisoned in their gcxxi conscience. The 
stupidity of the good is unfathomably wise. 


It is the truth, however, that the good must be Pharisees — 
tiiey have no choice! 

The good must crucify hino who deviseth his own virtue! 
That /j the truth! 

The second one, however, who discovered their country — 
the country, heart and soil of the good and just, — ^it was he 
who asked; "Whom do they hate most?” 

The creator, hate they most, him who breaketh die tables 
and old values, the breaker, — ^him they call the law-breaker. 

For the good — ^they cannot create; they are always the be- 
ginning of the end : — 

— ^They cmcify him who writeth new values on new tables, 
they sacrifice unto themselves the future — ^they cmcify the 
whole human future! 

The good — ^they have always been the beginning of the 
end. — 


O my brethren, have ye also understood this word? And 

what I once said of the "last man”? 

With whom lieth the greatest danger to the whole human 
future? Is it not with the good and just? 

Break up, break up, I pray you, the good and just! — O my 
brethren, have ye understood also this word? 

Ye flee from me? Ye are frightened? Ye tremble at this 



O my brethren, when I enjoined you to break up the 
good, and the tables of the good, then only did I embark man 
on his high seas. 

And now only cometh unto him the great terror, the great 
outlook, the great sickness, the great nausea, the great sea- 

False shores and false securities did the good teach you; in 
the lies of the good were ye born and bred. Everything hath 
been radically contorted and distorted by the good. 

But he who discovered the country of "man,*' discovered 
also the country of ''man’s future.” Now shall ye be sailors 
for me, brave, patient! 

Keep yourselves up betimes, my brethren, learn to keep 
yourselves up! The sea stormeth : many seek to raise themselves 
again by you. 

The sea stormeth: all is in the sea. Well! Qbeer up! Ye old 

What of fatherland! Thither striveth our helm where our 
children's land is! Thitherwards, stormier than the sea, 
stormeth our great longing! — 

"Why so hard!” — ^said to the diamond one day the char- 
coal; "are we then not near relatives?” — 

Why so soft? O my brethren; thus do 1 ask you: are ye then 
not — ^my brethren? 

Why so soft, so submissive and yielding? Why is there so 
much negation and abnegation in your hearts? Why is there 
so little fate in your looks? 


And if ye will not be fates and inexorable ones, how can 
ye one day — conquer with me? 

And if your hardness will not glance and cut and chip to 
pieces, how can ye one day — create with me? 

For the creators are hard. And blessedness must it seem to 
you to press your hand upon millenniums as upon wax, — 

— ^Blessedness to write upon the will of milleuniums as 
upon brass, — ^harder than brass, nobler than brass. Entirely 
hard is only the noblest. 

This new table, O my brethren, put I up over you: Become 
bard ! — 


O thou, my Will! Thou change of every need, my needful- 
ness! Preserve me from all small victories! 

Thou fatedness of my soul, which I call fate! Thou In-me! 
Over-me! Preserve and spare me for one great fate! 

And thy last greatness, my Will, spare it for thy last — ^that 
thou mayest be inexorable in thy victory! Ah, who hath not 
succumbed to his victory! 

Ah, whose eye hath not bedimmed in this intoxicated twi- 
light! Ah, whose foot hath not faltered and forgotten in vic- 
tory — ^how to stand! — 

— ^That I may one day be ready and ripe in the great noon- 
tide: ready and ripe like the glowing ore, the lightning-bearing 
doud, and the swelling milk-udder: — 

— ^Ready for myself and for my most hidden Will: a bow 
eager for its arrow, an arrow eager for its star: — 

— ^A star, ready and ripe in its noontide, glowing, pierced, 
blessed, by annihilating sun-arrows: — 



— sun itself, and an inexorable sun-will, ready for anni- 
hilation in victory! 

O Will, thou change of every need, my needfulness! Spare 
me for one great victory! 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

The Convalescent 


One morning, not long after his return to his cave, Zara- 
thustra sprang up from his couch like a madman, crying with a 
frightful voice, and acting as if some one still lay on the couch 
who did not wish to rise. Zlarathustra’s voice also resounded 
in such a manner that his animals came to him frightened, and 
out of all the neighbouring caves and lurking-places all the 
creatures slipped away — ^flying, fluttering, creeping or leaping, 
according to their variety of foot or wing. Zarathustra, how- 
ever, spake these words: 

Up, abysmal thought out of my depth! I am thy cock and 
morning dawn, thou overslept reptile: Up! Up! My voice shall 
soon crow thee awake! 

Unbind the fetters of thine ears: listen! For I wish to hear 
thee! Up! Up! Thereisthunderenough to make the very graves 

And rub the sleep and all the dimness and blindness out of 


thine eyes! Hear me also with thine eyes: my voice is a medi- 
cine even for those born blind. 

And once thou art awake, then shalt thou ever remain awake. 
It is not my custom to awake great-grandmothers out of their 
sleep that I may bid them — ^sleep on! 

Thou stirrest, stretchest thyself, wheezest? Up! Up! Not 
wheeze, shalt thou, — ^but speak unto me! Zarathustra calleth 
thee, Zarathustra the godless! 

I, Zarathustra, the advocate of living, the advocate of suffer- 
ing, the advocate of the circuit — ^thee do I call, my most 
abysmal thought! 

Joy to me! Thou comest, — hear thee! Mine abyss speaketh^ 
my lowest depth have I turned over into the light! 

Joy to me! Come hither! Give me thy hand ^ha! let be! 

aha! ^Disgust, disgust, disgust ^alas tome! 

Hardly, however, had Zarathustra spoken these words, 
when he fell down as one dead, and remained long as one 
dead. When however he again came to himself, then was he 
pale and trembling, and remained lying; and for long he 
would neither eat nor drink. This condition continued for 
seven days; his animals, however, did not leave him day nor 
night, except that the eagle flew forth to fetch food. And what 
it fetched and foraged, it laid on Zarathustra's couch: so that 
Zarathustra at last lay among yellow and red berries, grapes, 
rosy apples, sweet-smelling herbage, and pine-cones. At his 
feet, however, two lambs were stretched, which the eagle had 
with difficulty carried off from their shepherds. 

At last, after seven days, Zarathustra raised himself upon his 



couch, took a rosy apple in his hand, smelt it and found its 
smell pleasant. Then did his animals think the time had come 
to speak imto him. 

'"O Zarathustra,*' said they, "*now hast thou lain thus for 
seven days with heavy eyes: wilt thou not set thyself again 
upon thy feet? 

Step out of thy cave: the world waiteth for thee as a garden. 
The wind playeth with heavy fragrance which seeketh for 
thee; and all brooks would like to run after thee. 

All things long for thee, since thou hast remained alone for 
seven days — ^step forth out of thy cave! All things want to be 
thy physicians! 

Did perhaps a new knowledge come to thee, a bitter, 
grievous knowledge? Like leavened dough layest thou, thy soul 
arose and swelled beyond aU its bounds. — '' 

— O mine animals, answered Zarathustra, talk on thus and 
let me listen! It refresheth me so to hear your talk: where there 
is talk, there is the world as a garden unto me. 

How charming it is that there are words and tones; are not 
words and tones rainbows and seeming bridges ’twixt the 
eternally separated? 

To each soul belongeth anc^er world; to each soul is every 
other soul a back-world. 

Among the most alike doth semblance deceive most de- 
lightfully: for the smallest gap is most difficult to bridge over. 

For me — ^how could there be an outside-of-me? There is no 
outside! But this we forget on hearing tones; how delightful 
it is that we forget! 

Have not names and tones been given unto things that man 
may refresh himself with them? It is a beautiful folly, speak- 
ing; therewith danceth man over everything. 

244 thus spake zarathustra 

How lovely is all speech and all falsehoods of tones! With 
tones danceth our love on variegated rainbows. — 

— Zarathustra,” said then his animals, *'to those who 
think like us, things all dance themselves: they come and hold 
out the hand and laugh and flee — and return. 

Everything goeth, everything returneth; eternally rolleth the 
wheel of existence. Everything dieth, everything blossometii 
forth again; eternally runneth on the year of existence. 

Everything breaketh, everything is integrated anew; eter- 
nally buildeth itself the same house of existence. All things 
separate, all things again greet one another; eternally true to 
itself remaineth the ring of existence. 

Every moment beginneth existence, around every 'Here’ 
rolleth the ball 'There/ The middle is everywhere. Crooked 
is the path of eternity.” — 

— O ye wags and barrel-organs! answered Zarathustra, and 
smiled once more, how well do ye know what had to be ful- 
filled in seven days: — 

— ^And how that monster crept into my throat and choked 
me! But I bit oflf its head and spat it away from me. 

And ye — ye have made a lyre-lay out of it? Now, however, 
do I lie here, still exhausted with that biting and spitting- 
away, still sick with mine own salvation. 

And ye looked on at it all? O mine animals, are ye also cruel? 
Did ye like to look at my great pain as men do? For man is the 
cmellest animal. 

At tragedies, bull-fights, and crucifixions hath he hitherto 
been happiest on earth; and when he invented his hell, behold, 
that was his heaven on earth. 

When the great man crieth — : immediately runneth the 
little man thither, and his tongue hangeth out of his mouth 
for very lusting. He, however, calleth it his ' 'pity.” 



The little man, especially the poet — ^how passionately doth 
he accuse life in words! Hearken to him, but do not fail to hear 
the delight which is in all accusation! 

Such accusers of life — ^them life overcometh with a glance of 
the eye. '*Thou lovest me?" saith the insolent one; '*wait a 
little, as yet have I no time for thee." 

Towards himself man is the cruellest animal; and in all who 
call themselves ‘'sinners" and “bearers of the cross" and 
“penitents," do not overlook the voluptuousness in their 
plaints and accusations! 

And I myself — do, I thereby want to be man’s accuser? Ah, 
mine animals, this only have I learned hitherto, that for man 
his baddest is necessary for his best, — 

— That all that is baddest is the best power , and the hardest 
stone for the highest creator; and that man must become 
better and badder: — 

Not to this torture-stake was I tied, that I know man is bad, 
— ^but I cried, as no one hath yet cried: 

‘ ‘Ah, that his baddest is so very small! Ah, that his best is so 
very small!" 

The great disgust at man — it strangled me and had crept 
into my throat: and what the soothsayer had presaged: “All is 
alike, nothing is worth while, knowledge strangleth." 

A long twilight limped on before me, a fatally weary, 
fatally intoxicated sadness, which spake with yawning mouth. 

“Eternally he refcumeth, the man of whom thou art weary, 
the small man " — so yawned my sadness, and dragged its foot 
and could not go to sleep. 

A cavern, became the human earth to me; its breast caved in; 
everything living became to me human dust and bones and 
mouldering past. 

My sighing sat on all human graves, and could no longer 


arise: my sighing and questioning croaked and choked, and 
gnawed and nagged day and night: 

— "Ah, man retumeth eternally! The small man returnetfa 

Naked had I once seen both of them, the greatest man and 
Ihe smallest man: all too like one another — ^all tcx) human, 
even the greatest man! 

All too small, even the greatest man! — that was my disgust 
at man! And the eternal return also of the smallest man! — ^that 
was my disgust at all existence! 

Ah, Disgust! Disgust! Disgust! Thus spake Zarathus- 

tra, and sighed and shuddered; for he remembered his sick- 
ness. Then did his animals prevent him from speaking further. 

"Do not speak further, tihiou convalescent!” — ^so answered 
his animals, "but go out where the world waiteth for thee like 
a garden. 

Go out unto the roses, the bees, and the flocks of doves! 
Especially, however, unto the singing-birds, to learn singing 
from them! 

For singing is for the convalescent; the sound ernes may talk. 
And when the sound also want songs, then want they other 
songs than the convalescent.” 

— "O ye wags and barrel-organs, do be silent!” answered 
Zaraihustra, and smiled at his animals. "How well ye know 
what consolation I devised for myself in seven days! 

That I have to sing once more — that consolation did I de- 
vise for myself, and this convalescence: would ye also make 
another lyre-lay thereof?” 

— "Do not talk further,” answered his animals once more; 
"rather, thou convalescent, prepare for thyself first a lyre, a 
new lyre! 



For behold, O Zarathustra! For thy new lajrs there are 
needed new lyres. 

Sing and bubble over, O Zarathustra, heal thy soul widi new 
lays: that thou mayest bear thy great fate, whidx hat-h not yet 
been any one’s fate! 

For thine animals know it well, O Zarathustra, who thou 
art and must beoome: bdiold, thou art the teacher of the 
eternal return , — that is now thy fate! 

That thou must be the first to teach this teadiing — ^how 
could this great fate not be thy greatest danger and infirmity ! 

Behold, we know what thou teachest: that all things eter- 
nally return, and ourselves with them, and that we have already 
existed times without number, and all things with us. 

Thou teachest that there is a great year of Becoming, a 
prodigy of a great year; it must, like a sand-glass, ever turn up 
anew, that it may anew run down and run out: — 

— So that all those years ate like one another in the greatest 
and also in the smallest, so that we ourselves, in every great 
year, are like ourselves in the greatest and also in the smallest. 

And if thou wouldst now die, O 2^athustra, behold, we 
know also how thou woxildst then speak to thyself : — but thine 
animals beseech thee not to die yet! 

Thou wouldst speak, and without trembling, buoyant rather 
with bliss, for a great weight and worry would be taken from 
thee, thou patientest one! — 

'Now do I die and disappear,’ wouldst thou say, 'and in a 
moment I am notiiing. Souls are as mortal as bodies. 

But the plexus of causes returneth in which I am inter- 
twined, — ^it will again create me! I myself pertain to the causes 
of the eternal return. 

I come again with this sun, with this earth, with this eagle. 


with this serpent — not to a new life, or a better life, or a similar 

— come again eternally to this identical and selfsame life, 
in its greatest and its smallest, to teach again the eternal return 
of all things, — 

— ^To speak again the word of the great noontide of earth 
and man, to announce again to man the Superman. 

I have spoken my word. I break down by my word: so 
willeth mine eternal fate — as announcer do I succumb! 

The hour hath now come for the down-goer to bless himself. 
Thus — endeth Zarathustra's down-going.' " 

When the animals had spoken these words they were silent 
and waited, so that Zarathustra might say something to them; 
but Zarathustra did not hear that they were silent. On the con- 
trary, he lay quietly with closed eyes like a person sleeping, 
although he did not sleep; for he communed just then with his 
soul. Tlie serpent, however, and the eagle, when they found 
him silent in such wise, respected the great stillness around 
him, and prudently retired. 

55 . The Great Longing 

O MY soul, I have tau^t thee to say "today” as "once on a 
time” and "fonnerly,” and to dance thy measure over every 
Here and There and Yonder. 

O my soul, I delivered thee from all by-places, I brushed 

down from thee dust and spiders and twilight. 

O my soul, I washed the petty shame and the by-place virtue 


from thee, and persuaded thee to stand naked before the eyes 
of the suiL 

With the storm that is called “spirit” did I blow over thy 
surging sea; all douds did I blow away from it; I strangled even 
the strangler called "siiL” 

O my soul, I gave thee the right to say Nay like the storm, 
and to say Yea as the open heaven saith Yea: calm as the light 
remainest thou, and now walkest through denying storms. 

O my soul, I restored to thee liberty over the created and die 
uncreated; and who knoweth, as thou knowest, the voluptuous- 
ness of the future? 

O my soul, I taugiht thee the contempt which doth not come 
like worm-eating, the greats the loving contempt, which loveth 
most where it contemneth most. 

O my soul, I taught thee so to persuade that thou persuadest 
even the grounds themselves to thee: like the sun, which per- 
suadeth even the sea to its height. 

O my soul, I have taken from thee all obeying and knee- 
bending and homage-paying; I have myself given thee the 
names, "Qiange of need” and "Fate.” 

O my soul, I have ^ven thee new names and gay-coloured 
playthings, I have called thee "Fate” and "the Circuit of cir- 
cuits” and "the Navel-string of time” and "the Azure belL” 

O my soul, to thy domain gave I aU wisdom to drink all new 
wines, and also all immemorially old strong wines of wisdom. 

O my soul, every sun shed I upon thee, and every night and 
every silence and every longing: — then grewest thou up fot 
me as a vine. 

O my soul, exuberant and heavy dost thou now stand forth, 
a vine with swelling udders and full clusters of brown golden 



— Filled and weighted by thy happiness, waiting from 
superabundance, and yet ashamed of thy waiting. 

O my soul, there is nowhere a soul which could be more 
loving and more comprehensive and more extensive! Where 
could future and past be closer together than with thee? 

O my soul, I have given thee everything, and all my hands 
have become empty by thee: — ^and now! Now sayest thou to 
me, smiling and full of melancholy: **Which of us oweth 
thanks? — 

— Doth the giver not owe thanks because the receiver re- 
ceived? Is bestowing not a necessity? Is receiving not — ^pity- 

O my soul, I understand the smiling of thy melancholy: 
thine over-abimdance itself now stretcheth out longing hands! 

Thy fulness looketh forth over raging seas, and seeketh and 
waiteth: the longing of over-fulness looketh forth from the 
smiling heaven of thine eyes! 

And verily, O my soul! Who could see thy smiling and not 
melt into tears? The angels themselves melt into tears through 
the over-graciousness of thy smiling. 

Thy graciousness and over-graciousness, is it which will not 
complain and weep: and yet, O my soul, longeth thy smiling 
for tears, and thy trembling mouth for sobs. 

*ls not all weeping complaining? And all complaining, ac- 
cusing?” Thus speakest thou to thyself; and therefore, O my 
soul, wilt thou rather smile than pour forth thy grief — 

— ^Than in gushing tears pour forth all thy grief concerning 
thy fulness, and concerning the craving of the vine for the 
vintager and vintage-knife! 

But wilt thou not weep, wilt thou not weq> forth thy purple 
melancholy, then wilt thou have to r/wg, O my soul! — ^Behold, 
I smile myself, who foretell thee this: 



— ^Thou -wilt have to sing with passionate song, until all seas 
turn calm to hearken unto thy longing, — 

— ^Until over calm longing seas the bark glideth, the golden 
marvel, around the gold of which all good, bad, and marvel- 
lous things frisk: — 

— ^Also many large and small animals, and everything that 
hath light marvellous feet, so that it can mn on violet-blue 
paths, — 

— ^Towards the golden marvel, the spontaneous bark, and its 
master: he, however, is the vintager who waiteth with the 
diamond vintage-knife, — 

— ^Thy great deliverer, O my soul, the nameless one 
— ^for whom future songs only will find names! And verily, 
already hath thy breath the fragrance of future songs, — 

— ^Already glowest thou and dreamest, already drinkest thou 
thirstily at all deep echoing wells of consolation, already re- 
poseth thy melancholy in the bliss of future songs! 

O my soul, now have I given thee all, and even my last 
possession, and all my hands have become empty by thee: 
— that I bade thee sing, behold, that was my last thing to give! 

That I bade thee sing, — ^say now, say: which of us now — 
oweth thanks? — ^Better still, however: sing rmto me, sing, O 
my soul! And let me thank thee! — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



^g. The Second Dance Song 


'Into thiae eyes gazed I lately, O Life: gold saw I gleam in 
thy night-eyes, — my heart stood still with delight: 

— golden bark saw I gleam on darkened waters, a sinking, 
drinking, reblinking, golden swing-bark! 

At my dance-frantic foot, dost thou cast a glance, a laughing, 
questioning, melting, thrown glance: 

Twice only movedst thou thy rattle with thy little hands — 
then did my feet swing with dance-fury. — 

My heels reared aloft, my toes they hearkened, — ^thee they 
would know: hath not the dancer his ear — ^in his toe! 

Unto thee did I spring: then fledst thou back from my 
bound; and towards me waved thy fleeing, flying tresses round! 

Away from thee did I spring, and from thy snaky tresses: 
then stoodst thou there half-turned, and in thine eye caresses. 

With aooked glances — dost thou teach me crooked courses; 
on crooked courses learn my feet— crafty fancies! 

I fear thee near, I love thee far; thy flight allureth me, thy 
seeking secureth me: — suffer, but for thee, what would I not 
gladly bear! 

For thee, whose coldness inflameth, whose hatred mislead- 
eth, whose flight enchaineth, whose mockery — pleadeth: 

— Who would not hate thee, thou great bindress, in- 
windress, temptress, seekress, findress! Who would not love 
thee, thou innocent, impatient, wind-swift, child-eyed sinner! 

Whither pullest thou me now, thou paragon and tomboy? 
And now foolest thou me fleeing; thou sweet romp dost annoy! 


I dance after thee, I follow even faint traces lonely. Where 
art thou? Give me thy hand! Or thy finger only! 

Here are caves and thickets: we shall go astray! — Halt! 
Stand still! Seest thou not owls and bats in fluttering fray? 

Thou bat! Thou owl! Thou wouldst play me foul? Where 
are we? From the dogs hast thou learned thus to bark and howl. 

Thou gnashest on me sweetly with little white teeth; thine 
evil eyes shoot out upon me, thy curly little mane from under- 

This is a dance over stock and stone: I am the hunter, — ^wilt 
thou be my hound, or my chamois anon? 

Now beside me! And quickly, wickedly springing! Now up! 
And over! — ^Alas! I have fallen myself overswinging! 

Oh, see me lying, thou arrogant one, and imploring grace.^ 
Gladly would I walk with thee — ^in some lovelier place! 

— ^In the paths of love, through bushes variegated, quiet, 
trim! Or there along the lake, where gold-fishes dance and 

Thou art now a-weary? There above are sheep and sim-set 
stripes: is it not sweet to sleep — ^the shepherd pipes? 

Thou art so very weary? I carry thee thither; let just thine 
arm sink! And art thou thirsty — should have something; but 
thy mouth would not like it to drink! — 

— Oh, that cursed, nimble, supple serpent and lurking- 
witch! Where art thou gone? But in my face do I feel through 
thy hand, two spots and red blotches itch! 

I am verily weary of it, ever thy sheepish shepherd to be- 
Thou witch, if I have hitherto sung unto thee, now shalt thou 
— cry unto me! 

To the rhythm of my whip shalt thou dance and cry! I for 
get not my whip? — Not I!" — 




Then did Life answer me thus, and kept thereby her fine ears 

"O Zarathustra! Crack not so terribly with thy whip! Thou 
knowest surely that noise killeth thought, — ^and just now 
there came to me such delicate thoughts. 

We are both of us genuine ne’er-do-wells and ne’er-do-ills. 
Beyond good and evil found we our island and our green 
meadow — ^we two alone! Therefore must we be friendly to 
each other! 

And even should we not love each other from the bottom of 
our hearts, — must we then have a grudge against each other if 
we do not love each other perfectly? 

And that I am friendly to thee, and often too friendly, that 
knowest thou; and the reason is that I am envioxis of thy Wis- 
dom. Ah, this mad old fool, Wisdom! 

If thy Wisdom should one day run away from thee, ah! then 
would also my love run away from thee quickly.” — 

Thereupon did Life look thoughtfully behind and around, 
and said softly: '*0 Zarathustra, thou art not faithful enough 
to me! 

Thou lovest me not nearly so much as thou sayest; I know 
thou thinkest of soon leaving me. 

There is an old heavy, heavy, booming-clock: it boometh by 
night up to thy cave : — 

— ^When thou hearest this clock strike the hours at midnight, 
then thinkest thou between one and twelve thereon — 

— ^Thou thinkest thereon, O Zarathustra, I know it — of soon 
leaving me!” — 



“Yea,” answered I, hesitatingly, "but thou knowest it also” 
— And I said something into her ear, in amongst her confused, 
yellow, foolish tresses. 

"Thou knowest tihat, O 2^athustra? That knoweth no 
one ” 

And we gazed at each other, and looked at die green 
meadow o’er which the cool evening was just passing, and we 
wept together. — Then, however, was Life dearer unto me than 
all my Wisdom had ever been. — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



O man! Take heed! 


What saith deep midnight’s voice indeed.^ 

"I slept my sleep — 


"From deepest dream I’ve woke and plead:— 


"'The world is deep. 


"And deeper than the day could read. 



"Deep is its woe — 


"Joy — deeper still than grief can be: 


"Woesaith: Hence! Go! 


"But joys all want eternity — 


"Want deep profound eternity!" 


60. The Seven Seals 

(or the yea and amen LAY.Jj 


If I be a diviner and full of the divining spirit which wan- 
dereth on high mountain-ridges, ’twixt two seas, — 
Wandereth ’twixt the past and the future as a heavy doud — 
hostile to sultry plains, and to all that is weary and can neither 
die nor live: 

Ready for lightning in its dark bosom, and for the redeem- 



tag flash of light, charged with lightnings which say Yea! 
which laugh Yea! ready for divining flashes of lightning: — 
— ^Blessed, however, is he who is thus charged! And verily, 
long must he hang like a heavy tempest on the moimtain, who 
shall one day kindle the light of the future! — 

Oh, how could I not be ardent for Eternity and for the mat- 
riage-ring of rings — ^the ring of the return? 

Never yet have I found the woman by whom I should like 
to have children, unless it be this woman whom I love: for I 
love thee, O Eternity! 

For I love thee, O Eternity! 


If ever my wrath hath burst graves, shifted landmarks, or 
rolled old shattered tables into precipitous depths: 

If ever my scorn hath scattered mouldered words to the 
winds, and if I have come like a besom to cross-spiders, and as 
a cleansing wind to old charnel-houses: 

If ever I have sat rejoicing where old gods lie buried, 
world-blessing, world-loving, beside the monuments of old 
world-maligners: — 

— ^For even churdbes and gods’-graves do I love, if only 
heaven looketh through their ruined roofs with pxire eye^ 
gladly do I sit like grass and red poppies on ruined churches — ■ 

Oh, how coiild I not be ardait for Eternity, and for the 
marriage-ring of rings — the ring of the return? 

Never yet have I found the woman by whom I should like to 
have children, unless it be this woman whom I love: for I 
love thee, O Eternity! 

For I love thee, O Eternity! 




If ever a breath hath come to me of the creative breath, and 
of the heavenly necessity which compelleth even chances to 
dance star-dances: 

If ever I have laughed with the laughter of the aeative 
lightning, to which the long thunder of the deed followeth, 
grumblingly, but obediently: 

If ever I have played dice with the gods at the divine table 
of the earth, so that the earth quaked and ruptured, and 
snorted forth fire-streams: — 

— ^For a divine table is the earth, and trembling with new 
creative dictums and dice-casts of the gods: 

Oh, how could I not be ardent for Eternity, and for the 
marriage-ring of rings — ^the ring of the return? 

Never yet have I found the woman by whom I should like to 
have children, unless it be this woman whom I love: for I love 
thee, O Eternity! 

For I love thee, O Eternity! 


If ever I have drunk a full draught of the foaming spice- 
and confection-bowl in which all things are well mixed: 

If ever my hand hath mingled the furthest with the nearest, 
fire with spirit, joy with sorrow, and the harshest with the 

If I myself am a grain of the saving salt which maketh every- 
thing in the confection-bowl mix well: — 



— ^For there is a salt which xiniteth good with evil; and even 
the evilest is worthy, as spicing and as final over-foaming: — 

Oh, how could I not be ardent for Eternity, and for the 
marriage-ring of rings — ^the ring of the return? 

Never yet have I found the woman by whom I should lit-p 
to have children, iznless it be this woman whom I love: for I 
love thee, O Eternity! 

For 1 love thee, O Eternity! 


If I be fond of the sea, and all that is sealike, and fondest 
of it when it angrily contradicteth me: 

If the exploring delight be in me, whidi impelleth sails to 
the undiscovered, if the seafarer’s delight be in my delight: 

If ever my rejoicing hath called out: "The shore hath 
vanished, — ^now hath fallen from me the last chain — 

The boimdless roareth around me, far away sparkle for me 
space and time, — well! cheer up! old heart!” — 

Oh, how could I not be ardent for Eternity, and for the 
marriage-ring of rings — ^the ring of the return? 

Never yet have I found the woman by whom I should like 
to have children, unless it be this woman whom I love: for I 
love thee, O Eternity! 

For I love thee, O Eternity! 


If my virtue be a dancer’s virtue, and if I have often sprung 
witii both feet into golden-emerald rapture: 

26 o 


If my wickedness be a laughing wickedness, at home among 
rose-banks and hedges of lilies: 

— or in laughter is all evil present, but it is sanctified and 
absolved by its own bliss : — 

And if it be my Alpha and Omega that everything heavy 
shall become light, everybody a dancer, and every spirit a bird : 
and verily, that is my Alpha and Omega! — 

Oh, how could I not be ardent for Eternity, and for the mar- 
riage-ring of rings — the ring of the return? 

Never yet have I found the woman by whom I should like 
to have children, unless it be this woman whom I love: for I 
love thee, O Eternity! 

For I love thee, 0 Eternity! 


If ever I have spread out a tranquil heaven above me, and 
have flown into mine own heaven with mine own pinions: 

If I have swum playfully in profound luminous distances, 
and if my freedom’s avian wisdom hath come to me: — 

— ^Thus however speaketh avian wisdom: — "Lo, there is no 
above and no below! Throw thyself about, — outward, back- 
ward, thou light one! Sing! speak no more! 

— ^Are not all words made for the heavy? Do not all words 
lie to the light ones? Sing! speak no more!” — 

Oh, how could I not be ardent for Eternity, and for Jhe 
marriage-ring of rings — the ring of the return? 

Never yet have I found the woman by whom I should like 
to have children, unless it be this woman whom I love: for I 
love thee, O Eternity! 

For I love thee, O Eternity! 



Ah, where in the world have there 
been greater follies than with the piti- 
ful? And what in the world hath 
caused more suffering than the follies 
of the pitiful? 

Woe unto all loving ones who have 
not an elevation which is above their 

Thus spake the devil unto once 
on a time: "Ever God hath his hell: 
it is his love for man/* 

And lately did I hear him say these 
words; "God is dead: of his pity for 
man hath God died/* — Zarathustra, 
IL. **The Pitifiil** (p. 102). 


6i, The Honey Sacrifice 

— ^And again passed moons and years over Zarathustra’s soul, 
and he heeded it not; his hair, however, became white. One 
day when he sat on a stone in front of his cave, and gazed 
calmly into the distance — one there gazeth out on the sea, and 
away beyond sinuous abysses, — ^then went his animals thought- 
fully roimd about him, and at last set themselves in front of 

Zarathustra,” said they, ''gazest thou out perhaps for thy 
happiness.^” — "Of what account is my happiness!'' answered 
he, "I have long ceased to strive any more for happiness, I 
strive for my work." — "O Zarathustra," said the animals once 
more, "that sayest thou as one who hath overmuch of good 
things. Liest thou not in a sky-blue lake of happiness?" — "Ye 
wags," answered Zarathustra, and smiled, "how well did ye 
choose the simile! But ye know also that my happiness is heavy, 
and not like a fluid wave of water: it presseth me and will not 
leave me, and is like molten pitch.” — 

Then went his animals again thoughtfully around him, and 
placed themselves once more in front of him. "O Zarathustra,” 
said they, "it is consequently for that reason that thou thy- 
self always becometh yellower and darker, although thy hair 
looketh white and flaxen? Lo, thou sittest in thy pitch!" — 
"What do ye say, mine animals?" said Zarathustra, laughing; 
"verily I reviled when I spake of pitch. As it happenetfa with 



me, so is it with all fruits that turn ripe. It is the honey in my 
veins that maketh my blood thicker, and also my soul stiller.** 
— ”So will it be, O Zarathustra,’* answered his animals, and 
pressed up to him; '*but wilt thou not today ascend a high 
mountain.^ The air is pure, and today one seeth more of the 
world than ever.** — ^‘'Yea, mine animals,** answered he, * ye 
counsel admirably and according to my heart: I will today 
ascend a high moxmtain! But see that honey is there ready to 
hand, yellow, white, good, ice~cool, golden-comb-honey. For 
know that when aloft I will make the honey-sacrifice.** — 

When Zarathustra, however, was aloft on the summit, he 
sent his animals home that had accompanied him, and found 
that he was now alone: — ^then he laughed from the bottom of 
his heart, looked around him, and spake thus: 

That I spake of sacrifices and honey-sacrifices, it was merely 
a ruse in talking and verily, a useful folly! Here aloft can I 
now speak freer than in front of mountain-caves and ancho- 
rites* domestic animals. 

What to sacrifice! I squander what is given me, a squan- 
derer with a thousand hands: how could I call that — ^sacri- 

And when I desired honey I only desired bait, and sweet 
mucus and mucilage, for which even the mouths of growling 
bears, and strange, sulky, evil birds, water: 

— ^The best bait, as huntsmen and fishermen require it. For 
if the world be as a gloomy forest of animals, and a pleasure^ 
ground for all wild huntsmen, it seemeth to me rather — and 
preferably — z. fathomless, rich sea; 

— sea full of many-hued fishes and crabs, for which even 
the gods might long, and might be tempted to become fishers 


in it, and casters of nets, — ^so rich is the world in wonderful 
things, great and small! 

Especially the human world, the human sea: — ^towards it 
do I now throw out my golden angle-rod and say: Open up, 
thou human abyss! 

Open up, and throw imto me thy fish and shining crabs! 
With my l^t bait shall I allure to myself today the strangest 
human fish! 

— ^My happiness itself do I throw out into all places far 
and wide ’twixt orient, noontide, and Occident, to see if many 
human fish will not learn to hug and tug at my happiness; — 

Until, biting at my sharp hidden hooks, they have to come 
up unto my height, the mod^est abyss-groundlings, to the 
wickedest of all fishers of men. 

For this am I from the heart and from the beginning — 
drawing, hither-drawing, upward-drawing, upbringing; a 
drawer, a trainer, a training-master, who not in vain coun- 
selled himself once on a time: ''Become what tiiou art!'* 

Thus may men now come up to me; for as yet do I await 
the signs that it is time for my down-going; as yet do I not 
myself go down, as I must do, amongst men. 

Therefore do I here wait, crafty and scornful upon high 
mountains, no impatient one, no patient one; rather one 
who hath even unlearnt patience, — ^because he no longer 

For my fate giveth me time: it hath forgotten me perhaps? 
Or doth it sit behind a big stone and catch flies? 

And verily, I am well-disposed to mine eternal fate, be- 
cause it doth not hoimd and hurry me, but leaveth me time 
for merriment and mischief; so that I have to-day ascended this 
high mountain to catch fish. 


Did ever any one catch fish upon high mountains? And 
though it be a folly what I here seek and do, it is better so than 
that down below I should become solemn with waiting, and 
green and yellow — 

— posturing wrath-snorter with waiting, a holy howl- 
storm from the mountains, an impatient one that shouteth 
down into the valleys: ''Hearken, else I will scourge you with 
the scourge of God!” 

Not that I would have a grudge against such wrathful ones 
on that account: they are well enough for laughter to me! 
Impatient must they now be, those big alarm-drums, which 
find a voice now or never! 

Myself, however, and my fate — ^we do not talk to the 
Present, neither do we talk to the Never: for talking we have 
patience and time and more than time. For one day must it yet 
come, and may not pass by. 

What must one day come and may not pass by? Our great 
Hazar, that is to say, our great, remote human-kingdom, the 
Zarathustra-kingdom of a thousand years 

How remote may such "remoteness” be? What doth it 
concern me? But on that account it is none the less sure unto 
me — , with both feet stand I secure on this ground; 

— On an eternal ground, on hard primary rock, on this 
highest, hardest, primary mountain-ridge, unto which all 
winds come, as unto the storm-parting, asking Where? and 
Whence? and Whither? 

Here laugh, laugh, my hearty, healthy wickedness! From 
high mountains cast down thy glittering scorn-laughter! 
Allure for me with thy glittering the finest human fish! 

And whatever belongeth unto me in all seas, my in-and- 
f or-me in all things — fish that out for me, bring thai up to me: 
for that do I wait, the wickedest of all fish-catchers. 


Out! out! my fishing-hook! In and down, thou bait of my 
happiness! Drip thy sweetest dew, thou honey of my heart! 
Bite, my fishing-hook, into the belly of aU black affliction! 

Look out, look out, mine eye! Oh, how many seas round 
about me, what dawning hmnan futures! And above me — 
what rosy red stillness! What unclouded silence! 

62. The Cry of Distress 

The next day sat Zaratfaustra again on the stone in front of 
his cave, whilst his animals roved about in the world outside 
to bring home new food, — ^also new honey: for Zarathustra 
had spent and wasted the old honey to the very last particle. 
When he thus sat, however, with a stick in his hand, tracing 
the shadow of his figure on the earth, and reflecting — ^verily! 
not upon himself and his shadow, — ^all at once he startled and 
shrank back: for he saw another shadow beside his own. And 
when he hastily looked around and stood up, behold, there 
stood the soothsayer beside him, the same whom he had once 
given to eat and drink at his table, the proclaimer of the great 
weariness, who taught: ''All is alike, nothing is worth while, 
the world is without meaning, knowledge strangleth.'' But 
his face had changed since then; and when Zarathustra looked 
into his eyes, his heart was startled once more: so much evil 
announcement and ashy-grey lightnings passed over that coun- 

The soothsayer, who had perceived what went on in 2^- 
thustra’s soul, wiped his face witii his hand, as if he would 
wipe out the impression; the same did also Zarathustra. And 


when both of them had thus silently composed and strength- 
ened themselves, they gave each other the hand, as a token 
that they wanted once more to recognise each c^er. 

"Welcome hither,” said Zarathustra, "thou soothsayer of 
the great weariness, not in vain shalt thou once have been my 
messmate and guest. Eat and drink also with me to-day, and 
forgive it that a cheerful old man sitteth with tihee at table!” — 
"A cheerful old man.?” answered the soothsayer, shaking his 
head, "but whoever thou art, or wouldst be, O Zarathustra, 
thou hast been here aloft the longest time, — ^Ln a little while 
thy bark shall no longer rest on dry land!” — "Do I then rest 
on dry land.?” — asked Zarathustra, laughing. — "The waves 
around thy mountain,” answered the soothsayer, "rise and 
rise, the waves of great distress and affliction: they will soon 
raise thy bark also and carry thee away.” — ^Thereupon was 
Zarathustra silent and wondered. — ^"Dost thou still hear 
nothing?" continued the soothsayer: "doth it not rush and 
roar out of the depth?” — Zarathustra was silent once more and 
listened: then heard he a long, long cry, which the abysses 
threw to one another and passed on; for none of them wished 
to retain it: so evil did it sound. 

“Thou ill announcer,” said Zarahustra at last, "that is a cry 
cjf distress, and the cry of a man; it may come perhaps out of 
a blade sea. But what doth human distress matter to me! My last 
sin which hath been reserved for me, — ^knowest thou what it is 

— "Pity!” answered the soothsayer from an overflowing 
heart, and raised both his hands aloft — "O Zarathustra, I have 
come that I may seduce thee to thy last sin!” — 

And hardly had those words been uttered when there 
sounded the cry once more, and longer and more alarming 



than before — ^also much nearer. ''Hearest thou? Hearest thou, 
O Zarathustra?"' called out the soothsayer, "the cry concemetfa 
thee, it calleth thee: Come, come, come; it is time, it is the 
highest time! * ’ — 

Zarathustra was silent thereupon, confused and staggered; 
at last he asked, like one who hesitateth in himself : “And who 
is it that there calleth me?’* 

“But thou knowest it, certainly,** answered the soothsayer 
warmly, “why dost thou conceal thyself? It is the higher mm 
that crieth for thee!’* 

“The higher man?” cried Zarathustra, horror-stricken: 
“what wanteth he? What wanteth he? The higher man! What 
wanteth he here?” — ^and his skin covered with perspiration. 

The soothsayer, however, did not heed Zarathustra’s alarm, 
but listened and listened in the downward direction. When, 
however, it had been still there for a long while, he looked 
behind, and saw Zarathustra standing trembling. 

“O Zarathustra,” he beg^n, with sorrowful voice, “thou dost 
not stand there like one whose happiness maketh him giddy: 
thou wilt have to dance lest thou tumble down! 

But although thou shouldst dance before me, and leap all thy 
side-leaps, no one may say unto me: 'Behold, here danceth the 
last joyous man!* 

In vain would any one come to tiiis height who sought him 
here: caves would he find, indeed, and back-caves, hiding- 
places for hidden ones; but nc^ lucky mines, nor treasure- 
chambers, nor new gold-veins of happiness. 

Happiness — ^how indeed could one find happiness among 
such buried-alive and solitary ones! Must I yet seek the last 
happiness on the Happy Isles, and far away among forgotten 


But all is alike, nothing is worth while, no seeking is of 
service, there are no longer any Happy Isles!*’ 

Thus sighed the soothsayer; with his last sigh, however, 
Zarathustra again became serene and assured, like one who 
hath come out of a deep chasm into the light. ''Nay! Nay! 
Tlpree times Nay!” exclaimed he with a strong voice, and 
stroked his beard — ^^tha$ do I Icnow better! There are still 
Happy Isles! Silence thereorii thou sighing sorrow-sack! 

Cease to splash thereon, thou rain-cloud of the forenoon! 
Do I not already stand here wet with thy misery, and drenched 
like a dog? 

Now do I shake myself and run away from thee, that I may 
again become dry: thereat mayest thou not wonder! Do I seem 
to thee discourteous? Here however is my court. 

But as regards the higher man: well! I shall seek him at 
once in those forests: jrom thence came his cry. Perhaps he is 
there hard beset by an evil beast. 

He is in my domain: therein shall he receive no scath! And 
verily, there are many evil beasts about me.” — 

With those words Zarathustra turned around to depart. 
Then said the soothsayer: "O Zarathustra, thou art a rogue! 

I know it well: thou wouldst fain be rid of me! Rather 
wouldst thou run into the forest and lay snares for evil beasts! 

But what good will it do thee? In the evening wilt thou have 
me again: in thine own cave will I sit, patient and heavy like a 
block — ^and wait for thee!” 

"So be it!” shouted back Zarathustra, as he went away: "and 
what is mine in my cave belongeth also unto thee, my guest! 

Shouldst thou however find honey therein, well! just lick it 
up, thou growling bear, and sweeten thy soul! For in the eve- 
ning we want bodi to be in good spirits; 



— ^In good spirits and joyful, because tliis day hath come to 
an end! And thou thyself shalt dance to my lays, as my dancing- 

Thou dost not believe this? Thou shakest thy head? Well! 
Cheer up, old bear! But I also — am a soothsayer.” 

Thm spake Zarathustra. 

6^. Talk with the Kings 


Ere Zarathustra had been an hour on his way in the moun- 
tains and f orests, he saw all at once a strange procession. Right 
on the path which he was about to descend came two kings 
walking, bedecked with crowns and purple girdles, and varie- 
gated like flamingoes: they drove before them a laden ass. 
''What do these kings want in my domain?*' said Zarathustra 
in astonishment to his heart, and hid himself hastily behind a 
thicket. When however the kings approached to him, he said 
half -aloud, like one speaking only to himself: "Strange! 
Strange! How doth this harmonise? Two kings do I see — ^and 
only one ass!" 

Thereupon the two kings made a halt; they smiled and 
looked towards the spot whence the voice proceeded, and 
afterwards looked into each other's faces. "Such things do we 
also think among ourselves," said the king on the right, "but 
we do not utter them." 

The king on the left, however, shmgged his shoulders and 


answered: '*That may perhaps be a goat-herd. Or an anchorite 
who hath lived too long among rocks and trees. For no society 
at all spoileth also good manners.” 

''Good manners?” replied angrily and bitterly the other 
king: "what then do we run out of the way of? Is it not 'good 
manners*? Our 'good society*? 

Better, verily, to live among anchorites and goat-herds, than 
with our gilded, false, over-rouged populace — ^though it call 
itself 'good society.' 

— ^Though it call itself 'nobility.' But there all is false and 
foul, above all the blood — ^thanks to old evil diseases and 
worse curers. 

The best and dearest to me at present is still a sound peasant, 
coarse, artful, obstinate and enduring: that is at present the 
noblest type. 

The peasant is at present the best; and the peasant type 
should be master! But it is the kingdom of the populace — no 
longer allow anjrthing to be imposed upon me. The populace, 
however — ^that meaneth, hodgepodge. 

Populace-hodgepodge: therein is everything mixed with 
everything, saint and swindler, gentleman and Jew, and every 
beast out of Noah's ark. 

Good manners! Everything is false and foul with us. No 
one knoweth any longer how to reverence: it is that precisely 
that we run away from. They are fulsome obtmsive dogs; they 
gild palm-leaves. 

This loathing choketh me, that we kings ourselves have be- 
come false, draped and disguised with the old faded pomp of 
our ancestors, show-pieces for the stupidest, the craftiest, and 
whosoever at present trafficketh for power. 

We aare not the first men — and have nevertheless to stand for 



diem: of this imposture have we at last become weary and 

From the rabble have we gone out of the way, from all those 
bawlers and scribe-blowflies, from the trader-stench, the ambi- 
tion-fidgeting, the bad breath — : fie, to live among the rabble; 

— ^Fie, to stand for the first men among the rabble! Ah, 
loathing! Loathing! Loathing! "What doth it now matter about 
us kings!” — 

"Thine old sickness seizedi thee,” said here the king on the 
left, "thy loathing sei2eth thee, my poor brotber. Thou 
knowest, however, that some one heareth us.” 

Immediately thereupon, Zarathustra, who had opened eats 
and eyes to this talk, rose from his hiding-place, advanced 
towards the kings, and thus began: 

"He who hearkened! imto you, he who gladly hearkenelh 
unto you, is called Zarathustra. 

I am Zarathustra who once said: ‘What doth it now matter 
about kings!’ Forgive me; I rejoiced when ye said to each 
other: ‘What doth it matter about us king?!’ 

Here, however, is my domain and jurisdiction: what may ye 
be seeking in my domain? Perhaps, however, ye have found on 
your way what I seek: namely, the higher man.” 

When the kings heard this, they beat upon their breasts and 
said with one voice: "We are recognised! 

W'^ith the sword of thine utterance severest thou the thickest 
darkness of our hearts. Thou hast discovered our distress; for 
lo! we are on our way to find the higher man — 

— The man that is higher than we, although we are kings. 
To him do we conv^ this ass. For the highest m a n shall also 
be the highest lord on earth. 

There is no sorer misfortune in all human destiny, than 
when the mighty of the eartfi are not also the first men. 'Then 


everything becometh false and distorted and monstrous. 

And when they are even the last men, and more beast than 
man, then riseth and riseth the populace in honour, and at last 
saith even the populace-virtue: ‘Lo, I alone am virtue!’ ” — 
What have I just heard? answered Zarathustra. What wis- 
dom in kings! I am enchanted, and verily, I have already 
promptings to make a rhyme thereon: — 

— ^Even if it should happen to be a rhyme not suited for 
eycry one’s ears. I unlearned long ago to have consideration 
fox long ears. Well then! Well now! 

(^Here, however, it happened that the ass also found utter- 
ance: it said distinctly and with malevolence, Y-e-a.) 

*Twas once — ^methinks year one of our blessed Lord, — 
Drunk without wine, the Sybil thus deplored: — 

"How ill things go! 

Decline! Decline! Ne’er sank the world so low! 

Rome now hath turned harlot and harlot-stew, 

Rome’s Csesar a beast, and God — ^hath turned Jew!” 

With those rhymes of Zarathustra the kings were delighted; 
tfxe king on the right, however, said: "O Zarathustra, how 
well it was that we set out to see thee! 

For thine enemies showed us thy likeness in their mirror: 
iiiere lookedst thou with the grimace of a devil, and sneer- 
ragly : so that we were afraid of thee. 

But what good did it do! Always didst thou prick us anew 
in heart and ear with thy sayings. Then did we say at last: 
What doth it matter how be look! 



We must hear him; him who teadbeth: *Ye shall love peace 
as a means to new wars, and the short peace more than the 

No one ever spake such warlike words: 'What is good? To 
be brave is good. It is the good war that halloweth evegr 

O Zarathustra, our fathers’ blood stirred in our veins at 
such words: it was like the voice of spring to old wine-casks. 

When the swords ran among one another like red-spotted 
serpents, then did our fathers become fond of life; the sun of 
every peace seemed to them languid and lukewarm, the long 
peace, however, made them ashamed. 

How they sighed, our fathers, when they saw on the wall 
brightly furbished, dried-up swords! Like those they thirsted 
for war. For a sword thirsteth to drink blood, and sparkleth 
with desire.” 

— ^When the kings thus discoursed and talked eagerly of the 
happiness of their fathers, there came upon Zarathustra no 
little desire to mock at their eagerness: for evidently they were 
very peaceable kings whom he saw before him, kings with 
old and refined features. But he restrained himself. "Well!” 
said he, "thither leadeth the way, there lieth the cave of Zara- 
thustra; and this day is to have a long evening! At present, 
however, a cry of distress calleth me hastily away from you. 

It will honour my cave if kings want to sit and wait in it: 
but, to be sure, ye will have to wait long! 

Well! What of that! Where doth one at present learn 
better to wait than at courts? And the whole virtue of kings 
that hath remained unto them — ^is it not called to-day: Ability 
to wait?” 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 



64. The Leech 

And Zarathustra went llioughtfully on, further and lower 
down, through forests and past moory bottoms; as it hap- 
peneth, however, to every one who meditateth upon hard 
matters, he trod thereby unawares upon a man. And lo, there 
spurted into his face all at once a cry of pain, and two curses 
and twenty bad invectives, so that in his fright he raised his 
stick and also struck the trodden one. Immediately afterwards, 
however, he regained his composure, and his heart laughed at 
the folly he had just committed. 

'Tardon me,” said he to the trodden one, who had got up 
enraged, and had seated himself, ''pardon me, and hear first 
of all a parable. 

As a wanderer who dreameth of remote things on a lone- 
some highway, runneth unawares against a sleeping dog, a dog 
which lieth in the sun: 

— ^As both of them then start up and snap at each other, like 
deadly enemies, those two beings mortally frightened — ^so 
did it happen unto us. 

And yet! And yet — ^how little was lacking for them to 
caress each other, that dog and that lonesome one! Are they 
not both — ^lonesome ones!” 

— ''Whoever thou art,” said the trodden one, still enraged, 
"thou treadest also too nigh me with thy parable, and not only 
with thy foot! 

Lo! am I then a dog?” — ^And thereupon the sitting one got 
up, and pulled his naked arm out of the swamp. For at first 
he had lain outstretched on the ground, hidden and indis- 
cernible, like those who lie in wait for swamp-game. 


**But whatever art thoa about!” called out Zarathustra in 
alarm, for he saw a deal of blood streaming over the naked 
arm, — 'Vhat hath hurt thee? Hath an evil beast bit thee, 
thou unfortunate one?” 

The bleeding one laughed, still angry, '*What matter is it 
to thee!” said he, and was about to go on. "Here am I at home 
and in my province. Let him question me whoever will: to a 
dolt, however, I shall hardly answer.” 

"Thou art mistaken,” said Zarathustra sympathetically, and 
held him fast; "thou art mistaken. Here thou art not at home, 
but in my domain, and therein shall no one receive any hurt. 

Call me however what thou wilt — am who I must be. I 
call myself Zarathustra. 

Well! Up thither is the way to Zarathustra’s cave: it is not 
far, — ^wilt thou not attend to thy woimds at my home? 

It hath gone badly with thee, thou unfortunate one, in this 
life: first a beast bit thee, and then — a man trod upon 

When however the trodden one had heard the name of 
Zarathustra he was transformed. "What happeneth unto me!” 
he exclaimed, preoccupieth me so much in this life as 
this one man, namely Zarathustra, and that one animal that 
liveth on blood, the leech? 

For the sake of die leech did I lie here by this swamp, like 
a fisher, and already had mine outstretched arm been bitten 
ten times, when there biteth a still finer leech at my blood, 
Zarathustra himself! 

O happiness! O miracle! Praised be this day which enticed 
me into the swamp! Praised be the best, the livest cupping- 
glass, that at present liveth; praised be the great conscience- 
leech Zarathustra!” — 


Thus Spake the troddea one, and Zarathustra rejoiced at his 
words and their refined reverential style. "Who art thou?” 
a^ed he, and gave him his hand, "there is much to clear up 
and elucidate between us, but already methinketh pure clear 
day is dawning.” 

"I am the sphitually conscientious one,” answered he who 
was asked, "and in matters of the spirit it is difficult for any one 
to take it more rigorously, more restrictedly, and more severely 
than I, except him from whom I learnt it, Zarathustra himself. 

Better know nothing than half-know many things! Better 
be a fool on one’s own account, than a sage on other people’s 
approbation! I — go to the basis: 

— ^What matter if it be great or small? If it be called swamp 
or sky? A handbreadth of basis is enough for me, if it be 
actually basis and ground! 

— A handbreadth of basis: Ihereon can one stand. In the true 
knowing-knowledge there is nothing great and nothing 

"Then thou art perhaps an expert on the leech?” asked 
Zarathustra; "and thou investigatest the leech to its ultimate 
basis, thou conscientious one?” 

"O Zarathustra,” answered the trodden one, "that would be 
something immense; how could I presume to do so! 

That, however, of which I am master and knower, is the 
hrain of the leech: — that is my world! 

And it is also a world! Forgive it, however, that my pride 
here findeth expression, for here I have not mine equal. There- 
fore said I : 'here am I at home.' 

How long have I investigated this one thing, tiie brain of 
the leech, so that here the slippery truth might no longer slip 
from me! Here is my domain! 

— ^For the sake of this did I cast everything else aside, for 



the sake of this did everything else become indifferent to me; 
and dose beside my knowledge lieth my black ignorance. 

My spiritual consdence required! from me that it should 
be so — ^that I should know one thing, and not know all else; 
they are a loathing unto me, all the semi-spiritual, all the hazy, 
hovering, and visionary. 

Where mine honesty ceaseth, there am I blind, and want 
also to be blind. Where I want to know, however, there want 
I also to be honest — ^namely, severe, rigorous, restricted, cruel 
and inexorable. 

Because thou once saidest, 0 Zarathustra: 'Spirit is life 
which itsdf cutteth into life’; — that led and allured me to 
thy doctrine. And verily, with mine own blood have I in- 
creased mine own knowledge!” 

— "As the evidence indicateth,” broke in Zarathustra; for 
still was the blood flowing down on the naked atm of the 
consdentious one. For there had ten leeches bitten into it 

"O thou strange fellow, how much doth this very evidence 
teach me — ^namdy, thou thyself! And not all, perhaps, might 
I pour into thy rigorous ear! 

Well then! We part here! But I would fain find thee again. 
Up thither is the way to my cave: to-night shaft thou there 
by my welcome guest! 

Fain would I also make amends to thy body for Zarathustra 
treading upon tiiee with his feet: I think about that. Just now, 
however, a cry of distress calleth me hastily away from thee.” 

Thus spake Zarathustm. 



6^. The Magician 


When however Zaxathustra had gone round a rock, then saw 
he on the same path, not far below him, a man who threw his 
limbs about like a maniac, and at last tumbled to the ground 
on his belly. ''Halt!*' said then Zarathustra to his heart, '"he 
there must surely be the higher man, from him came that 
dreadful cry of distress, — will see if I can help him/* When, 
however, he ran to the spot where the man lay on the ground, 
he found a trembling old man with fixed eyes; and in spite of 
all Zarathustra's efforts to lift him and set him again on his 
feet, it was all in vain. The unfortunate one, also, did not seem 
to notice that some one was beside him; on the contrary, he 
continually looked around with moving gestures, like one for- 
saken and isolated from all the world. At last, however, after 
much trembling, and convulsion, and curling-himself-up, he 
began to lament thus: 

Who warm*th me, who lov*th me still? 

Give ardent fingers! 

Give heartening charcoal-warmers! 

Prone, outstretched, trembling. 

Like him, half dead and cold, whose feet one warm’th — 

And shaken, ah! by unfamiliar fevers. 

Shivering with sharpened, icy-cold frost-arrows, 

By thee pursued, my fancy! 

Ineffable! Recondite! Sore-frightening! 

Thou huntsman *hind the cloud-banks! 



Now lightning-struck by thee, 

Thou mocking eye that me in darkness watcheth: 
— ^Thus do I lie. 

Bend myself, twist myself, convulsed 
With all eternal torture. 

And smitten 

By thee, cruellest huntsman. 

Thou unfamiliar — God . . . 

Smite deeper! 

Smite yet once more! 

Pierce through and rend my heart! 

What mean'th this torture 
With dull, indented arrows? 

Why look'st thou hither. 

Of human pain not weary. 

With mischief-loving, godly flash-glances? 

Not murder wilt thou. 

But torture, torture? 

For why — me torture. 

Thou mischief -loving, unfamiliar God? — 

Ha! Ha! 

Thou stealest nigh 
In midnight's gloomy hour? . ♦ • 

What wilt thou? 


Thou crowdst me, pressest — 

Ha! now far too closely! 

Thou hearst me breathing. 

Thou o'erhearst my heart. 

Thou ever jealous one! 


— Of what, pray, ever jealous? 

Off! Off! 

jFor why the ladder? 

Wouldst thou gef in? 

To heart in-clamber? 

To mine own secretest 
Conceptions in-clamber? 

Shameless one! Thou unknown one! — Thief! 

What seekst thou by thy stealing? 

What seekst thou by thy hearkening? 

What seekst thou by thy torturing? 

Thou torturer! 

Thou — hangman-God ! 

Or shall I, as the mastiffs do. 

Roll me before thee? 

And cringing, enraptured, frantical. 

My tail friendly — ^waggle! 

In vain! 

Goad further! 

Cruellest goader! 

No dog — ^thy game just am I, 

Cruellest huntsman! 

Thy proudest of captives. 

Thou robber ’hind the cloud-banks . . . 

Speak finally! 

Thou lightning-veiled one! Thou unknown one! Speak! 
What wilt thou, highway-ambusher, from — me? 

What wilt thou, unfamiliar — God? 



How much of ransom-gold? 


Solicit much — that bid'th my pride! 

And be concise — ^that bid’th mine other pride! 

Ha! Ha! 

Me — ^wantst thou? me? 

— ^Entire? . . . 

Ha! Ha! 

And torturest me, fool that thou art, 
Dead-torturest quite my pride? 

Give love to me — ^who warm’th me still? 

Who lov’th me still? — 

Give ardent fingers 

Give heartening charcoal-warmers. 

Give me, the lonesomest. 

The ice (ah! seven-fold frozen ice 
For very enemies. 

For foes, doth make one thirst) . 

Give, yield to me, 

Cruellest foe, 

— Thyself! 


There fled he surely. 

My final, only comrade. 

My greatest foe, 

Mine unfamiliar — 

My hangman-God! . . . 


Come thou back! 

JFith all of thy great tortures! 



To me the last of lonesome ones, 

Oh, come tiiou back! 

All my hot tears in streamlets trickle 
Their course to thee! 

And all my final hearty fervour — 
Up-glow’th to thee! 

Oh, come thou back. 

Mine unfamiliar God! my pain! 
My final bliss! 

— ^Here, however, Zarathustra could no longer restrain him- 
self; he took his staff and struck the wailer with all his might. 
"Stop this,” cried he to him witii wrathful laughter, "stop this, 
thou stage-player! Thou false coiner! Thou liar from the very 
heart! I know thee well! 

I will soon make warm legs to thee, thou evil magician: I 
know well how — ^to make it hot for such as thou!” 

— "Leave off,” said the old man, and sprang up from the 
ground, "strike me no more, O Zarathustra! I did it only for 

That kind of thing belongeth to mine art. Thee thyself, I 
wanted to put to the proof when I gave this performance. And 
verily, thou hast well detected me! 

But thou thyself — hast given me no small proof of thyself: 
thou art hasrd, thou wise Zarathustra! Hard strikest thou with 
thy 'tmths,’ thy cudgel forceth from me — this tmth!” 

— "Flatter not,” answered Zarathustra, still excited and 
frowning, "thou stage-player from the heart! Thou art false: 
why speakest thou — of tmth! 



Thou peacock of peacocks, thou sea of vanity; what didst 
thou represent before me, thou evil magician; whom was I 
meant to believe in when thou wailedst in such wise?” 

*^The penitent in spirit!^ said the old man, '*it was him — 
represented; thou thyself once devisedst this expression — 

— ^The poet and magician who at last turneth his spirit 
against himself, the transformed one who freezeth to death 
by his bad science and conscience. 

And just acknowledge it: it was long, O Zarathustra, be- 
fore thou discoveredst my trick and lie! Thou believedst in my 
distress when thou heldest my head with both thy hands, — 

— heard thee lament Ve have loved him too little, loved ' 
him too little!' Because I so far deceived thee, my wickedness 
rejoiced in me.” 

”Thou mayest have deceived subtler ones than I,” said Zara- 
thustra sternly. '1 am not on my guard against deceivers; I 
have to be without precaution: so willeih my lot. 

Thou, however , — must deceive: so far do I know thee! Thou 
must ever be equivocal, trivocal, quadrivocal, and quinqui- 
vocal! Even what thou hast now confessed, is not nearly true 
enough nor false enough for me! 

Thou bad false coiner, how couldst thou do otherwise! Thy 
very malady wouldst thou whitewash if thou showed thyself 
naked to thy physician. 

Thus didst thou whitewash thy lie before me when thou 
saidst: T did so only for amusement!' There was also serious- 
ness therein, thou art something of a penitent-in-spirit! 

I divine thee well: thou hast become the enchanter of all 
the world; but for thyself thou hast no He or artifice left, — 
thou art disenchanted to thyself! 

Thou hast reaped disgust as thy one truth. No word in thee 


is any longer genuine, but thy mouth is so: that is to say, the 
disgust that deaveth unto thy mouth/’ 

— "'Who art thou at all!” cried here the old magician with 
defiant voice, * 'who dareth to speak thus unto me, the greatest 
man now living?” — ^and a green flash shot from his eye at 
Zarathustra. But immediately after he changed, and said sadly: 

Zarathustra, I am weary of it, I am disgusted with mine 
arts, I am not great, why do I dissemble! But thou knowest 
it well — I sought for greatness! 

A great man I wanted to appear, and persuaded many; but 
the lie hath been beyond my power. On it do I collapse. 

O Zarathustra, everything is a lie in me; but that I collapse 
— ^this my collapsing is genuine ^* — 

'It honoureth thee,” said Zarathustra gloomily, looking 
down with sidelong glance, "it honoureth thee that thou 
soughtest for greatness, but it betrayeth thee also. Thou art not 

Thou bad old magidan, that is the best and the honestest 
thing I honour in thee, that thou hast become weary of thy- 
self, and hast expressed it: 'I am not great.’ 

Therein do I honour thee as a penitent-in-spirit, and 
although only for the twinkling of an eye, in that one moment 
wast diou — ^genuine. 

But tell me, what seekest thou here in my forests and rocks? 
And if thou hast put thyself in my way, what proof of me 
wouldst thou have? — 

— Wherein didst thou put me to the test?” 

Thus spake Zarathustra, and his eyes sparkled. But the old 
magidan kept silence for a while; then said he: "Did I put thee 
to the test? I — seek only. 

O Zarathustra, I seek a genuine one, a right one, a simple 


one, an unequivocal one, a man of perfect honesty, a vessel of 
wisdom, a saint of knowledge, a great man! 

Knowest thou it not, O Zarathustra? I seek ZarathustraJ* 

— ^And here there arose a long silence between them: Zara- 
thustra, however, became profoundly absorbed in thought, so 
that he shut his eyes. But afterwards coming back to the situa- 
tion, he grasped the hand of the magician, and said, full of 
politeness and policy: 

“Well! Up thither leadeth the way, there is the cave of 
Zarathustra. In it mayest thou seek him whom thou wouldst 
fain find. 

And ask counsel of mine animals, mine eagle and my ser- 
pent: they shall help thee to seek. My cave however is large. 

I myself, to be sure — have as yet seen no great man. That 
which is great, the acutest eye is at present insensible to it. It 
is the kingdom of the populace. 

Many a one have I found who stretched and inflated him- 
self, and the people cried: 'Behold; a great man!' But what 
good do all bellows do! The wind cometh out at last. 

At last bursteth the frog which hath inflated itself too long: 
then cometh out the wind. To prick a swollen one in the belly,, 
I call good pastime. Hear that, ye boys! 

Our today is of the popular: who still knoweth what is 
great and what is small! Who could there seek successfully for 
greatness! A fool only: it succeedeth with fools. 

Thou seekest for great men, thou strange fool? Who taught 
that to thee? Is today the time for it? Oh, thou bad seeker, why 
dost thou — ^tempt me?” 

Thus spake Zarathustra, comforted in his heart, and went 
laughing on his way. 



66. Out of Service 

Not long, however, after Zarathustra had freed himself from 
the magician, he again saw a person sitting beside the path 
which he followed, namely a tall, black man, with a haggard, 
pale countenance: this man grieved him exceedingly. "Alas,*' 
said he to his heart, "there sitteth disguised afHiction; me- 
thinketh he is of the type of the priests: what do they want in 
my domain? 

What! Hardly have I escaped from that magician, and must 
another necromancer again mn across my path, — 

— Some sorcerer with laying-on-of -hands, some sombre 
wonder-worker by the grace of God, some anointed world- 
maligner, whom, may the devil take! 

But the devil is never at the place which would be his right 
placer he always cometh too late, that cursed dwarf and dub- 

Thus cursed Zarathustra impatiently in his heart, and con- 
sidered how with averted look he might slip past the black 
man. But behold, it came about otherwise. For at the same 
moment had the sitting one already perceived him; and not 
unlike one whom an unexpected happiness overtaketh, he 
^rang to his feet, and went straight towards Zarathustra. 

"Whoever thou art, thou traveller," said he, ''help a strayed 
one, a seeker, an old man, who may here easily come to grief! 

The world here is strange to me, and remote; wild beasts 
also did I hear howling; and he who could have given me pro- 
tection — ^he is himself no more. 

I was seeking the last pious man, a saint and an anchorite. 


who, alone in his forest, had not yet heard of what all the 
world knoweth at present.” 

doth all the world know at present?” asked Zara- 
thustra. "Perhaps that the old God no longer liveth, in whom 
all the world once believed?” 

"Thou sayest it,” answered the old man sorrowfully. "And 
I served that old God until his last hour. 

Now, however, am I out of service, without master, and yet 
not free; likewise am I no longer merry even for an hour, 
except it be in recollections. 

Therefore did I ascend into these mountains, that I might 
finally have a festival for myself once more, as becometh an 
old pope and church-father: for know it, that I am the last 
pope! — 2 . festival of pious recollections and divine services. 

Now, however, is he himself dead, the most pious of men, 
the saint in the forest, who praised his God constantly with 
singing and mumbling. 

He himself found I no longer when I found his cot — ^but 
two wolves found I therein, which howled on account of his 
death, — ^for all animals loved him. Then did I haste away. 

Had I thus come in vain into these forests and mountains? 
Then did my heart determine that I should seek another, the 
most pious of all those who believe not in God — my heart 
determined that I should seek Zarathnstral” 

Thus spake the hoary man, and gazed with keen eyes at him 
who stood before him. Zarathustra however seized the hand 
of the old pope and regarded it a long while with admiration. 

"Lo! thou venerable one,” said he then, "what a fine and 
long hand! That is the hand of one who hath ever dispensed 
blessings. Now, however, doth it hold fast him whom thou 
seekest, me, Zarathustra. 


It is I, the ungodly Zarathustra, who saith: ‘Who is un- 
godlier than I, that I may enjoy his teaching?* ** — 

Thus spake Zarathustra, and penetrated with his glances 
the thoughts and arrear-thoughts of the old pope. At last the 
latter began: 

“He who most loved and possessed him hath now also lost 
him most — : 

— Lo, I myself am surely die most godless of us at present? 
But who could rejoice at that!** — 

— “Thou servedst him to the last?** asked Zarathustra 
thoughtfully, after a deep silence, “thou knowest he 
died? Is it true what they say, that sympathy choked him; 

— ^That he saw how bang on the cross, and could not 

endure it; — that his love to man became his hell, and at last his 

The old pope however did not answer, but looked aside 
timidly, with a painful and gloomy expression. 

“Let him go,*’ said Zarathustra, after prolonged meditation, 
still looking the old man straight in the eye. 

“Let him go, he is gone. And though it honoureth thee that 
thou speakest only in praise of tiiis dead one, yet thou knowest 
as well as I he was, and that he went curious ways.** 

"To speak before three eyes,** said the old pope cheerfully 
(he was blind of one eye) , “in divine matters I am more en- 
lightened than Zarathustra himself — ^and may well be so. 

My love served him long years, my will followed all his will. 
A good servant, however, knoweth everything, and many a 
thing even which a master hideth from himself. 

He was a hidden God, full of secrecy. Verily, he did not 
come by his son otherwise than by secret ways. At the door of 
his faith standeth adultery. 

Whoever extolleth him as a God of love, doth not think 



highly enough o£ love itself. Did not that God want also to 
be judge? But the loving one loveth irrespective of reward 
and requital. 

When he was young, that God out of the Orient, then was 
he harsh and revengeful, and built himself a hell for the 
delight of his favourites. 

At last, however, he became old and soft and mellow and 
pitiful, more like a grandfather than a father, but most like 
a tottering old grandmother. 

There did he sit shrivelled in his chimney-corner, fretting 
on account of his weak legs, world-weary, will-weary, and one 
day he suffocated of his all-too-great pity.*' 

"Thou old pope,** said here Zarathustra interposing, "hast 
thou seen that with thine eyes? It could well have happened 
in that way: in that way, and also otherwise. When gods die 
they always die many kinds of death. 

Well! At all events, one way or other — ^he is gone! He was 
counter to the taste of mine ears and eyes; worse than that I 
should not like to say against him. 

I love everything that looketh bright and speaketh honestly. 
But he — ^thou knowest it, forsooth, thou old priest, there was 
something of thy type in him, the priest-type — he was equivo- 

He was also indistinct. How he raged at us, this wrath- 
snorter, because we understood him badly! But why did he 
not speak more dearly? 

And if the fault lay in our ears, why did he give us ears that 
heard him badly? If there was dirt in our ears, well! who put 
it in them? 

Too much miscarried with him, this potter who had not 
learned thoroughly! That he took revenge on his pots and 



creations, however, because they turned out badly — ^that was a 
sin against good taste. 

There is dso good taste in piety: this at last said : 'Away with 
such a God! Better to have no God, better to set up destiny on 
one's own account, better to be a fool, better to be God 
oneself!’ ” 

— "What do I hear!” said then the old pope, with intent 
ears; "O Zarathustra, thou art more pious than thou believest, 
with such an unbelief! Some god in thee hath converted thee 
to thine ungodliness. 

Is it not thy piety itself which no longer letteth thee be- 
lieve in a God.^ And thine over-great honesty will yet lead 
thee even bqrond good and evil! 

Behold, what hath been reserved for thee? Thou hast eyes 
and hands and mouth, which have been predestined for bless- 
ing from eternity. One doth not bless with the hand alone. 

Nigh unto thee, though thou professest to be the ungod- 
liest one, I feel a hale and holy odour of long benedictions: I 
feel glad and grieved thereby. 

Let me be thy guest, O Zarathustra, for a single night! 
Nowhere on earth shall I now feel better than with thee!” — 

"Amen! So shall it be!” said Zarathustra, with great aston- 
ishment; "up thither leadeth the way, there lieth the cave of 

Gladly, forsooth, would I conduct thee thither myself, thou 
venerable one; for I love all pious men. But now a cry of dis- 
tress calleth me hastily away from thee. 

In my domain shall no one come to grief; my cave is a 
good haven. And best of all would I like to put every sorrowful 
one again on firm land and firm legs. 



Who, however, could take thj melancholy off thy shoulders? 
For that I am too weak. Long, verily, should we have to wait 
imtil some one re-awoke thy God for thee. 

For that old God liveth no more; he is indeed dead.” — 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

67 . The Ugliest Man 

— ^And again did Zarathustra’s feet run through mountains 
and forests, and his eyes sought and sought, but nowhere was 
he to be seen whom they wanted to see — ^the sorely distressed 
sufferer and crier. On the whole way, however, he rejoiced in 
his heart and was full of gratitude. ”What good things,” said 
he, ”hath this day given me, as amends for its bad beginning! 
What strange interlocutors have I found! 

At their words will I now chew a long while as at good com; 
small shall my teeth grind and cmsh them, until they flow like 
milk into my soul!” — 

When, however, the path again curved round a rock, all at 
once the landscape changed, and Zarathustra entered into a 
realm of death. Here bristled aloft black and red cliffs, with* 
out any grass, tree, or bird's voice. For it was a valley which all 
animals avoided, even the beasts of prey, except that a species 
of ugly, thick, green serpent came here to die when they be- 
came old. Therefore the shepherds called this valley: ''Serpent- 

Zarathustra, however, became absorbed in dark recollec- 
tions, for it seemed to him as if he had once before stood in 


this valley. And much heaviness settled on his mind, so that 
he walked slowly and always more slowly, and at last stood 
still. Then, however, when he opened his eyes, he saw some- 
thing sitting by the wayside shaped like a man, and hardly 
like a man, something nondescript. And all at once there came 
over Zarathustra a great shame, because he had gazed on such 
a thing. Blushing up to the very roots of his white hair, he 
turned aside his glance, and raised his foot that he might 
leave this ill-starred place. Then, however, became the dead 
wilderness vocal: for from the ground a noise welled up, 
gurgling and rattling, as water gurgleth and rattleth at night 
through stopped-up water-pipes; and at last it turned into 
human voice and human speech: — ^it sounded thus: 

''Zarathustra! Zarathustra! Read my riddle! Say, say! 
is the revenge on the witness? 

I entice thee back; here is smooth ice! See to it, see to it, 
that thy pride does not here break its legs! 

Thou thinkest thyself wise, thou proud Zarathustra! Read 
then the riddle, thou hard nut-cracker, — ^the riddle that I am! 
Say then: who am 

— When however Zarathustra had heard these words, — 
what think ye then took place in his souL^ Pity overcame him; 
and he sank down all at once, like an oak that hath long with- 
stood many tree-fellers, — ^heavily, suddenly, to the terror even 
of those who meant to fell it. But immediately he got up 
again from the ground, and his countenance became stem. 

"I know thee well," said he, with a brazen voice, ^^thou art 
the murderer of God! Let me go. 

Thou couldst not endure him who beheld thee ^ — ^who ever 
beheld thee through and through, thou ugliest man. Thou 
tookest revenge on this witness!" 

Thus spake Zarathustra and was about to go; but the non- 



descript grasped at a comer of his garment and began anew 
to gurgle and seek for words. "Stay,” said he at last — 

— "Stay! Do not pass by! I have divined what axe it was 
that stmck thee to the ground : hail to ihee, O Zarathustra, that 
thou art again upon thy feet! 

Thou hast divined, I know it well, how the man feeleth who 
killed him, — ^the murderer of God. Stay! Sit down here be- 
side me; it is not to no pmrpose. 

To whom would I go but unto thee? Stay, sit down! Do not 
however look at me! Honour thus — ^mine ugliness! 

They persecute me: now art thou my last refuge. Not with 
their hatred, not with their bailiffs; — Oh, such persecution 
would I mock at, and be proud and cheerful! 

Hath not all success hitherto been with the well-persecuted 
ones? And he who persecuteth well leameth readily to be 
obsequent — when once he is — put behind! But it is their pity — 

— Their pity is it from which I flee away and flee to thee. O 
Zarathustra, protect me, thou, my last refuge, thou sole one 
who divinedst me: 

— Thou hast divined how the man feeleth who killed him. 
Stay! And if thou wilt go, thou impatient one, go not the way 
that I came. That way is bad. 

Art thou angry with me because I have already racked lan- 
guage too long? Because I have already counselled thee? But 
know that it is I, the ugliest man, 

— Who have also the largest, heaviest feet Where I have 
gone, the way is bad. I tread all paths to death and destmctiotL 

But that thou passedst me by in silence, that thou blushedst 
.r— I saw it well: thereby did I know thee as Zarathustra. 

Every one else would have thrown to me his alms, his pity, 
in look and speech. But for that — am not beggar enough : that 
didst thou divine. 



For that I am too rich, rich in what is great, frightful^ 
ugliest, most unutterable! Thy shame, O Zarathustra, honoured 

With difficulty did I get out of the crowd of the pitiful, — 
that I might find the only one who at present teacheth that 'pity 
is obtmsive’ — ^thyself, O Zarathustra! 

— Whether it be the pity of a God, or whether it be human 
pity, it is offensive to modesty. And unwillingness to help may 
be nobler than the virtue that rusheth to do so. 

That however — ^namely, pity — ^is called virtue itself at 
present by all petty people: — they have no reverence for great 
misfortune, great ugliness, great failure. 

Beyond all these do I look, as a dog looketh over the backs 
of thronging flocks of sheep. They are petty, good-wooled, 
good-willed, grey people. 

As the heron looketh contemptuously at shallow pools, with 
backward-bent head, so do I look at the throng of grey little 
waves and wills and souls. 

Too long have we acknowledged them to be right, those 
petty people: so we have at last given them power as well; — 
and now do they teach that 'good is only what petty people 
call good,' 

And 'tmth' is at present what the preacher spake who him- 
self sprang from them, that singular saint and advocate of 
the petty people, who testified of himself : 1 — ^am the tmth.' 

That immodest one hath long made the petty people greatly 
puffed up, — ^he who taught no small error when he taught: 1 
— ^am the truth.' 

Hath an immodest one ever been answered more courte- 
ously? — ^Thou, however, O Zarathustra, passedst him by, and 
saidst: *Nay! Nay! Three times Nay!' 

Thou warnedst against his error; thou warnedst — ^the first 



to do so — against pity: — ^not every one, not none, but thyself 
and thy type. 

Thou art ashamed of the shame of the great suJSferer; and 
verily when thou sayest: 'From pity there cometfa a heavy 
cloud; take heed, ye men!* 

— When thou teachest: 'All creators are hard, all great love 
is beyond their pity:* O Zarathustra, how well versed dost 
thou seem to me in weather-signs! 

Thou thyself, however, — ^wam thyself also against thy pity! 
For many are on their way to thee, many suffering, doubting, 
despairing, drowning, freezing ones — 

I warn thee also against myself. Thou hast read my best, my 
worst riddle, myself, and what I have done. I know the axe that 
felleth thee. 

But he — had to die: he looked with eyes which beheld 
everything f — ^he beheld men*s depths and dregs, all his hidden 
ignominy and ugliness. 

His pity knew no modesty: he crept into my dirtiest corners. 
This most prying, over-intrusive, over-pitiful one had to die. 

He ever beheld me: on such a witness I would have revenge 
— or not live myself. 

The God jvho beheld everything, and also man: that God 
had to die! Man cannot endure it that such a witness should 

Thus spake the ugliest man. Zarathustra however got up, 
and prepared to go on: for he felt frozen to the very bowels, 

"Thou nondescript,** said he, "thou wamedst me against 
thy path. As thanks for it I praise mine to thee. Behold, up 
thither is the cave of Zarathustra. 

My cave is large and deep and hath many comers; there 
findeth he that is most hidden his hiding-place. And close be- 


side it, there are a hundred lurking-places and by-places for 
creeping, fluttering, and hopping creatures. 

Thou outcast, who hast cast thyself out, thou wilt not live 
amongst men and men’s pity? Well then, do like me! Thus 
wilt thou learn also from me; only the doer leameth. 

And talk first and foremost to mine animals! The proudest 
animal and the wisest animal — ^they might well be the right 
counsellors for us both!” 

Thus spake Zarathustra and went his way, more thought- 
fully and slowly even than before: for he asked himself many 
things, and hardly knew what to answer. 

''How poor indeed is man,” thought he in his heart, "how 
ugly, how whee2y, how full of hidden shame! 

They teU me that man loveth himself. Ah, how great must 
that self-love be! How much contempt is opposed to it! 

Even this man hath loved himself, as he hath despised him- 
self, — ^a great lover methinketh he is, and a great despiser. 

No one have I yet found who more thoroughly despised 
himself: even thca is elevation. Alas, was this perhaps the 
higher man whose cry I heard? 

I love the great despisers. Man is something that hath to be 

68, The Voluntary Beggar 

When Zarathustra had left the ugliest man, he was chilled and 
felt lonesome: for much coldness and lonesomeness came over 
his spirit, so that even his limbs became colder thereby. When, 
however, he wandered on and on, uphill and down, at times 



past green meadows, though also sometimes over wild stony 
couches where formerly perhaps an impatient brook had made 
its bed, then he turned all at once warmer and heartier again. 

'*What hath happened unto me?” he asked himself, "some- 
thing warm and living quickeneth me; it must be in the neigh- 

Already am I less alone; imconscious companions and 
brethren rove around me; their warm breath toucheth my 

When, however, he spied about and sought for the com- 
forters of his lonesomeness, behold, there were kine there 
standing together on an eminence, whose proximity and smell 
had warmed his heart. The kine, however, seemed to listen 
eagerly to a speaker, and took no heed of him who approached. 
When, however, Zarathustra was quite nigh xmto them, then 
did he hear plainly that a human voice spake in the midst of 
the kine, and apparently all of them had turned their heads 
towards the speaker. 

Then ran Zarathustra up speedily and drove the animals 
aside; for he feared that some one had here met with harm, 
which the pity of the kine would hardly be able to relieve. But 
in this he was deceived; for behold, there sat a man on the 
ground who seemed to be persuading the animals to have no 
fear of him, a peaceable man and Preacher-on-the-Mount, out 
of whose eyes kindness itself preached. "What dost thou seek 
here?” called out Zarathustra in astonishment. 

"What do I here seek?” answered he: "the same that thou 
seekest, thou mischief-maker; that is to say, happiness upon 

To that end, however, I would fain learn of these kine. For 
I tell thee that I have already talked half a morning unto 


them, and just now were they about to give me their answer. 
Why dost thou disturb them? 

Except we be converted and become as kine, we shall in no 
wise enter into the kingdom of heaven. For we ought to learn 
from them one thing: mminating. 

And verily, although a man should gain the whole world, 
and yet not learn one thing, ruminating, what would it profit 
him! He would not be rid of his afSiction, 

— ^His great affliction: that, however, is at present called 
disgust. Who hath not at present his heart, his mouth and his 
eyes full of disgust? Thou also! Thou also! But behold these 
kine!*’ — 

Thus spake the Preacher-on-the-Mount, and turned then his 
own look towards Zarathustra — ^for hitherto it had rested 
lovingly on the kine — : then, however, he put on a different ex- 
pression. '"Who is this with whom I talk?** he exclaimed, 
frightened, and sprang up from the ground. 

'This is the man without disgust, this is Zarathustra him- 
self, the surmounter of the great disgust, this is the eye, this 
is the mouth, this is the heart of Zarathustra himself.** 

And whilst he thus spake he kissed with o’erflowing eyes 
the hands of him with whom he spake, and behaved alto- 
gether like one to whom a precious gift and jewel hath fallen 
unawares from heaven. The kine, however, gazed at it all and 

"Speak not of me, thou strange one; thou amiable one!** said 
Zarathustra, and restrained his affection, "speak to me firstly 
of thyself! Art thou not the voluntary beggar who once cast 
away great riches, — 

— ^Who was ashamed of his riches and of the rich, and fled 
to the poorest to bestow upon them his abundance and his 
heart? But th^ received him not/* 



**But they received me not/' said the voluntary beggar, **thou 
knowest it, forsooth. So I went at last to the animals and to 
those kine.” 

*Then learnedst thou," interrupted Zarathustra, "how much 
harder it is to give properly than to take properly, and that be- 
stowing well is an art — ^the last, subtlest master-art of kind- 

"Especially nowadays," answered the voluntary beggar: "at 
present, that is to say, when everything low hath become re- 
bellious and exclusive and haughty in its manner — in the 
manner of the populace. 

For the hour hath come, thou knowest it forsooth, for the 
great, evil, long, slow mob-and-slave-insurrection: it extendeth 
and extendeth! 

Now doth it provoke the lower classes, all benevolence and 
petty giving; and the overrich may be on their guard! 

Whoever at present drip, like bulgy bottles out of all-too- 
small necks : — of such bottles at present one willingly breaketh 
the necks. 

Wanton avidity, bilious envy, careworn revenge, populace- 
pride: all these struck mine eye. It is no longer true that the 
poor are blessed. The kingdom of heaven, however, is with 
the kine." 

"And why is it not with the rich?" asked Zarathustra tempt- 
ingly, while he kept back the kine which sniffed familiarly at 
the peaceful one. 

"Why dost thou tempt me?" answered the other. "Thou 
knowest it thyself better even than I. What was it drove me 
to the poorest, O Zarathustra? Was it not my disgust at the 

— ^At the culprits of riches, with cold eyes and rank thoughts, 


who pick Up profit out of all kinds of rubbish — ^at this rabble 
that stinketh to heaven, 

— ^At this gilded, falsified populace, whose fathers were 
pickpockets, or carrion-crows, or rag-pickers, with wives com- 
pliant, lewd and forgetful: — ^for they are all of them not far 
different from harlots — 

Populace above, populace below! What are 'poor* and 'rich’ 
at present! That distinction did I unlearn, — ^then did I flee 
away further and ever further, until I came to those kine.” 

Thus spake the peaceful one, and puffed himself and per- 
spired with his words: so that the kine wondered anew. Zara- 
thustra, however, kept looking into his face with a smile, all 
the time the man talked so severely — ^and shook silently his 

"Thou doest violence to thyself, thou Preacher-on-the- 
Mount, when thou usest such severe words. For such severity 
neither thy mouth nor thine eye have been given thee. 

Nor, methinketh, hath thy stomach either: xmto // all sudi 
rage and hatred and foaming-over is repugnant. Thy stomach 
wanteth softer things: thou art not a butcher. 

Rather seemest thou to me a plant-eater and a root-man. 
Perhaps thou grindest com. Certainly, however, thou art averse 
to fleshly joys, and thou lovest honey.” 

"Thou hast divined me well,” answered the volxintary beg- 
gar, with lightened heart. "I love honey, I also grind corn; for 
I have sought out what tasteth sweetly and maketh pure breath : 

— ^Also what requireth a long time, a day’s-work and a 
mouth’s-work for gentle idlers and sluggards. 

Furthest, to be sure, have those kine carried it: they have de- 
vised ruminating and lying in the sun. They also abstain from 
all heavy thoughts which inflate the heart.” 

— "Well!” said Zarathustra, "thou shouldst also see mine 



animals, mine eagle and my serpent, — ^their like do not at 
present exist on earth. 

Behold, thither leadeth the way to my cave: be tonight its 
guest. And talk to mine animals of the happiness of animals, — 

— ^Until I myself come home. For now a cry of distress 
calleth me hastily away from thee. Also, shouldst thou find 
new honey with me, ice-cold, golden-comb-honey, eat it! 

Now, however, take leave at once of thy kine, thou strange 
one! thou amiable one! though it be hard for thee. Foe they 
are thy warmest friends and preceptors!*’ — 

— ”One excepted, whom I hold still dearer,” answered the 
volimtary beggar. ”Thou thyself art good, O Zarathustra, and 
better even than a cow!” 

”Away, away with thee! thou evil flatterer!*' cried Zarathus- 
tra mischievously, ”why dost thou spoil me with such praise 
and flattery-honey? 

”Away, away from me!” cried he once more, and heaved 
his stick at the fond beggar, who, however, ran nimbly away. 

6g. The Shadow 

Scarcely however was the voluntary beggar gone in haste, 
and Zarathustra again alone, when he heard behind him a new 
voice which called out: ”Stay! Zarathustra! Do wait! It is 
myself, forsooth, O Zarathustra, myself, thy shadow!” But 
Zarathustra did not wait; for a sudden irritation came over 
Tittn on account of the crowd and the aowding in his moun- 
tains. "Whither hath my lonesomeness gone?” spake he. 


*'It is verily becoming too much for me; these mountains 
swarm; my kingdom is no longer of this world; I require new 

My shadow calleth me? What matter about my shadow! Let 
it run after me! I — ^run away from it.*' 

Thus spake Zarathustra to his heart and ran away. But the 
one behind followed after him, so that immediately there were 
three runners, one after the other — namely, foremost the 
voluntary beggar, then Zarathustra, and thirdly, and hindmost, 
his shadow. But not long had they run thus when Zarathustra 
became conscious of his folly, and shook oflF with one jerk all 
his irritation and detestation. 

''What!” said he, "have not the most ludicrous things 
always happened to us old anchorites and saints? 

Verily, my folly hath grown big in the mountains! Now do 
I hear six old fools’ legs rattling behind one another! 

But doth Zarathustra need to be frightened by his shadow? 
Also, methinketh that after all it hath longer legs than mine.” 

Thus spake Zarathustra, and, laughing with eyes and en- 
trails, he stood still and turned round quickly — ^and behold, 
he almost thereby threw his shadow and follower to the 
ground, so closely had the latter followed at his heels, and so 
weak was he. For when Zarathustra scrutinised him with his 
glance he was frightened as by a sudden apparition, so slender, 
swarthy, hollow and worn-out did this follower appear. 

"Who art thou?” asked Zarathustra vehemently, "what doest 
thou here? And why callest thou thyself my shadow? Thou art 
not pleasing unto me.” 

"Forgive me,” answered the shadow, "that it is I; and if I 
please thee not — ^well, O Zarathustra! therein do I admire thee 
and thy good taste. 



A wanderer am I, who have walked long at thy heels; always 
on the way, but without a goal, also without a home; so that 
verily, I lack little of being the eternally Wandering Jew, 
except that I am not eternal and not a Jew. 

What? Must I ever be on the way? Whirled by every wind, 
unsettled, driven about? O earth, thou hast become too round 
for me! 

On every surface have I already sat, like tired dust have I 
fallen asleep on mirrors and window-panes; everything taketh 
from me, nothing giveth; I become thin — am almost equal 
to a shadow. 

After thee, however, O Zarathustra, did I fly and hie longest; 
and though I hid myself from thee, I was nevertheless thy 
best shadow; wherever thou hast sat, there sat I also. 

With thee have I wandered about in the remotest, coldest 
worlds, like a phantom that voluntarily haunteth winter roofs 
and snows. 

With thee have I pushed into all the forbidden, all the worst 
and the furthest; and if there be anything of virtue in me, it is 
that I have had no fear of any prohibition. 

With thee have I broken up whatever my heart revered; all 
boundary-stones and statues have I overthrown; the most dan- 
gerous wishes did I pursue, — verily, beyond every crime did I 
once go. 

With thee did I unlearn the belief in words and worths and 
in great names. When the devil casteth his skin, doth not his 
name also fall away? It is also skin. The devil himself is 
perhaps — ^skin. 

’Nothing is true, all is permitted* ; so said I to myself. Into 
the coldest water did I plunge with head and heart. Ah, how 
oft did I stand there naked on that account, like a red aab! 

3o6 thus spake zarathustra 

Ah, where have gone all my goodness and all my shame and 
all my belief in the good! Ah, where is the lying mnocence 
which I once possessed, the innocence of the good and of their 
noble lies! 

Too oft, verily, did I follow close to the heels of truth: then 
did it kick me on the face. Sometimes I meant to lie, and be- 
hold! then only did I hit — ^the truth. 

Too much hath become dear unto me: now it doth not con- 
cern me any more. Nothing liveth any longer that I love, — 
how should I still love myself? 

To live as I indine, or not to live at all’: so do I wish; so 
wisheth also the holiest. But alas! how have I stUl — ^inclina- 

Have I — ^stiU a goal? A haven towards which my sail is set? 

A good wind? Ah, he only who knoweth whither he sailelh, 
knoweth what wind is good, and a fair wind for him. 

What still remained! to me? A heart weary and flippant; 
an unstable will; fluttering wings; a broken backbone. 

This seeking for my home: O Zarathustra, dost thou know 
diat this seeking hath been my home-sidcening; it eateth me up. 

'Where is — my home?’ For it do I ask and seek, and have 
sought, but have not found it. O eternal everywhere, O eternal 
nowhere, O eternal — in-vain!” 

Thus spake the shadow, and Zarathustra’s countenance 
lengthened at his words. "Thou art my shadow!” said he at 
last sadly. 

"'Thy danger is not small, thou free spirit and wanderer! 
Thou hast had a I»d day: see that a still worse evening doth 
not overtake thee! 

To such unsetded ones as diou, seemeth at last even a 



prisoner blessed. Didst thou ever see how captured criminals 
sleep? They sleep quietly, they enjoy their new security. 

Beware lest in the end a narrow faith capture thee, a hard, 
rigorous delusion! For now everything that is narrow and fixed 
seduceth and tempteth thee. 

Thou hast lost thy goal. Alas, how wilt thou forego and 
forget that loss? Thereby — ^hast thou also lost thy way! 

Thou poor rover and rambler, thou tired butterfly! wilt thou 
have a rest and a home this evening? Then go up to my cave! 

Thither leadeth the way to my cave. And now will I run 
quickly away from thee again. Already lieth as it were a 
shadow upon me. 

I will run alone, so that it may again become bright around 
me. Therefore must I still be a long time merrily upon my 
legs. In the evening, however, there will be — dancing with 

Thus spalce Zarathustra. 

yo. Noontide 

— ^And Zarathustra ran and ran, but he found no one else, 
and was alone and ever found himself again; he enjoyed and 
quaffed his solitude, and thought of good things — ^for hours. 
About the hour of noontide, however, when the sun stood 
exactly over Zarathustra’s head, he passed an old, bent and 
gnarled tree, which was encircled round by the ardent love of 
a vine, and hidden from itself; from this there hung yellow 

308 thus spake zarathustra 

grapes in abundance, confronting the wanderer. Then he felt 
inclined to quench a little thirst, and to break off for himself a 
cluster of grapes. When, however, he had already his arm out- 
stretched for that purpose, he felt still more inclined for some- 
thing else — ^namely, to lie down beside the tree at the hour of 
perfect noontide and sleep. 

This Zarathustra did; and no sooner had he laid himself on 
the ground in the stillness and secrecy of the variegated grass, 
than he had forgotten his little thirst, and fell asleep. For as 
the proverb of Zarathustra saith: *'One thing is more neces- 
sary than the other.” Only that his eyes remained open: — ^for 
they never grew weary of viewing and admiring the tree and 
the love of the vine. In falling asleep, however, Zarathustra 
spake thus to his heart: 

"'Hush! Hush! Hath not the world now become perfect? 
What hath happened unto me? 

As a delicate wind danceth invisibly upon parqueted seas, 
light, feather-light, so — danceth sleep upon me. 

No eye doth it dose to me, it leaveth my soul awake. Light 
is it, verily, feather-light. 

It persuadeth me, I know not how, it toudieth me inwardly 
with a caressing hand, it constraineth me. Yea, it constraineth 
me, so that my soul stretcheth itself out: — 

— ^How long and weary it becometh, my strange soul! Hath 
a seventh-day evening come to it predsely at noontide? Hath 
it already wandered too long, blissfully, among good and ripe 

It stretcheth itself out, long — ^longer! it lieth still, my strange 
soul. Too many good things hath it already tasted; this golden 
sadness oppresseth it, it distorted! its mouth, 

— ^As a ship that putteth into the calmest cove: — ^it now 



draweth up to the land, weary of long voyages and uncertain 
seas. Is not the land more faithful? 

As such a ship huggeth the shore, tuggetii the shore: — ^then 

sufficeth for a spider to spin its thread from the ship to the 
land. No stronger ropes are required there. 

As such a weary ship in the calmest cove, so do I also now 
repose, nigh to the earth, faithful, trusting, waiting, bound 
to it with the lightest threads. 

O happiness! O happiness! Wilt thou perhaps sing, O my 
soul? Thou liest in the grass. But this is the secret, solemn hour, 
when no shepherd playeth his pipe. 

Take care! Hot noontide sleepeth on the fields. Do not sing! 
Hush! The world is perfect. 

Do not sing, thou prairie-bird, my soul! Do not even whis- 
per! Lo — ^hush! The old noontide sleepeth, it moveth its 
mouth : doth it not just now drink a drop of happiness — 

— ^An old brown drop of golden happiness, golden wine? 
Something whisketh over it, its happiness laugheth. Thus — 
laugheth a God. Hush! — 

— Tor happiness, how little sufficeth for happiness!' Thus 
spake I once and thought myself wise. But it was a blasphemy: 
have I now learned. Wise fools speak better. 

The least thing precisely, the gentlest thing, the lightest 
thing, a lizard’s rustling, a breath, a whisk, an eye-glance — 
//U/e maketh up the happiness. Hush! 

— What hath befallen me: Hark! Hath time flown away? 
Do I not fall? Have I not fallen — ^hark! into the well of 

— What happened! to me? Hush! It stingeth me — ^alas — ^to 
the heart? To the heart! Oh, break up, break up, my heart, 
after such happiness, after such a sting! 


— What? Hath not the world just now become perfect? 
Round and ripe? Oh, for the golden round ring — ^whither 
doth it fly? Let me run after it! Quick! 

Hush (and here Zarathustra stretched himself, and 

felt that he was asleep.) 

"Up!'" said he to himself, '*thou sleeper! Thou noontide 
sleeper! Well then, up, ye old legs! It is time and more than 
time; many a good stretch of road is still awaiting you — 

Now have ye slept your All; for how long a time? A half- 
eternity! Well then, up now, mine old heart! For how long 
after such a sleep mayest thou — ^remain awake?’* 

(But then did he fall asleep anew, and his soul spake against 
him and defended itself, and lay down again) — *Xeave me 
alone! Hush! Hath not the world just now become perfect? 
Oh, for the golden roimd ball!” — 

**Get up,” said Zarathustra, ''thou little thief, thou slug- 
gard! What! Still stretching thyself, yawning, sighing, falling 
into deep wells? 

Wlio art thou then, O my soul!” ( and here he became fright- 
ened, for a sunbeam shot down from heaven upon his face. ) 

"O heaven above me,” said he sighing, and sat upright, 
"thou gazest at me? Thou hearkenest unto my strange soul? 

When wilt thou drink this drop of dew that fell down upon 
all earthly things, — ^when wilt thou drink this strange soul — 

— ^When, thou well of eternity! thou joyous, awful, noon- 
tide abyss! when wilt thou drink my soul back into thee?” 

Thus spake Zarathustra, and rose from his couch beside the 
tree, as if awakening from a strange drunkenness: and behold! 
there stood the sun still exactly above his head. One might, 
however, rightly infer therefrom that Zarathustra had not 
then slept long. 



77 . The Greeting 

It was late in the afternoon only when Zaratliustra, after long 
useless searching and strolling about, again came home to his 
cave. When, however, he stood over against it, not more than 
twenty paces therefrom, the thing happened which he now 
least of all expected: he heard anew the great cry of distress. 
And extraordinary! this time the cry came out of his own cave. 
It was a long, manifold, peculiar cry, and Zarathustra plainly 
distinguished that it was composed of many voices: although 
heard at a distance it might sound like the cry out of a single 

Thereupon Zarathustra rushed forward to his cave, an! 
behold! what a spectacle awaited him after that concert! For 
there did they all sit together whom he had passed during the 
day: the king on the right and the king on the left, the old 
magician, the pope, the voluntary beggar, the shadow, the in- 
tellectually conscientious one, the sorrowful soothsayer, and 
the ass; the ugliest man, however, had set a crown on his head, 
and had put round him two purple girdles, — ^for he liked, like 
all ugly ones, to disguise himself and play the handsome per- 
son. In the midst, however, of that sorrowful company stood 
Zarathustra's eagle, ruffled and disquieted, for it had been 
called upon to answer too much for which its pride had not any 
answer; the wise serpent however hung round its neck. 

All this did Zarathustra behold with great astonishment; 
then however he scrutinised each individual guest with cour- 
teous curiosity, read their souls and wondered anew. In the 
meantime the assembled ones had risen from their seats, and 
waited with reverence for Zarathustra to speak. Zarathustra 
however spake thus : 



''Ye despairing ones! Ye strange ones! So it was your cry of 
distress that I heard? And now do I know also where he is to 
be sought, whom I have sought for in vain today: the higher 
man — : 

— ^In mine own cave sitteth he, the higher man! But why do 
I wonder! Have not I myself allured him to me by honey- 
offerings and artful lure-calls of my happiness? 

But it seemeth to me that ye are badly adapted for com- 
pany: ye make one another's hearts fretful, ye that cry for 
help, when ye sit here together? There is one that must first 

— ^One who will make you laugh once more, a good jovial 
buffoon, a dancer, a wind, a wild romp, some old fool: — 
what think ye? 

Forgive me, however, ye despairing ones, for speaking such 
trivial words before you, unworthy, verily, of such guests! 
But ye do not divine what maketh my heart wanton: — 

— ^Ye yourselves do it, and your aspect, forgive it me! For 
every one becometh courageous who beholdeth a despairing 
one. To encourage a despairing one— every one thinketh him- 
self strong enough to do so. 

To myself have ye given this power, — good gift, mine 
honourable guests! An excellent guest's-present! Well, do not 
then upbraid when I also offer you something of mine. 

This is mine empire and my dominion: that which is mine, 
however, shall this evening and tonight be yours. Mine ani- 
mals shall serve you: let my cave be your resting-place! 

At house and home with me shall no one despair: in my 
purlieus do I protect every one from his wild beasts. And that 
is the first thing which I offer you: security! 

The second thing, however, is my little finger. And when ye 



have thatj then take the whole hand also, yea and the heart 
with it! Welcome here, welcome to you, my guests!'* 

Thus spake Zarathustra, and laughed with love and mis- 
chief. After this greeting his guests bowed once more and were 
reverentially silent; the king on the right, however, answered 
him in their name. 

Zarathustra, by the way in which thou hast given us thy 
hand and thy greeting, we recognise thee as Zarathustra. Thou 
hast humbled thyself before us; almost hast thou hurt our 
reverence — : 

— ^Who however could have humbled himself as thou hast 
done, with such pride? Thai uplifteth us ourselves; a refresh- 
ment is it, to our eyes and hearts. 

To behold this, merely, gladly would we ascend higher 
mountains than this. For as eager beholders have we come; we 
wanted to see what brighteneth dim eyes. 

And lo! now is it all over with our cries of distress. Now 
are our minds and hearts open and enraptured. Little is lack- 
ing for our spirits to become wanton. 

There is nothing, O Zarathustra, that groweth more pleas- 
ingly on earth than a lofty, strong will: it is the finest growth. 
An entire landscape refreshed! itself at one such tree. 

To the pine do I compare him, O Zarathustra, which 
groweth up like thee — ^tall, silent, hardy, solitary, of the best, 
supplest wood, stately, — 

— ^In the end, however, grasping out for its dominion with 
strong, green branches, asking weighty questions of the wind, 
the storm, and whatever is at home on high places; 

— ^Answering more weightily, a commander, a victor! Oh! 
who should not ascend high mountains to behold such 

At thy tree, O Zarathustra, the gloomy and ill-constituted 


also refresh themselves; at thy look even the wavering become 
steady and heal their hearts. 

And verily, towards thy mountain and thy tree do many eyes 
turn to-day; a great longing hath arisen, and many have learned 
to ask: 'Who is Zarathustra.^' 

And those into whose ears thou hast at any time dripped 
thy song and thy honey: all the hidden ones, the lone-dwellers 
and the twain-dwellers, have simultaneously said to their 

'Doth Zarathustra still live? It is no longer worth while to 
live, everything is indifferent, everything is useless: or else — 
we must live with Zarathustra!’ 

'Why doth he not come who hath so long announced him- 
self?’ thus do many people ask; 'hath solitude swallowed him 
up? Or should we perhaps go to him?’ 

Now doth it come to pass that solitude itself becometh 
fragile and breaketh open, like a grave that breaketh open and 
can no longer hold its dead. Everywhere one seeth resurrected 

Now do the waves rise and rise around thy mountain, O 
Zarathustra. And however high be thy height, many of them 
must rise up to thee: thy boat shall not rest much longer on dry 

And that we despairing ones have now come into thy cave, 
and already no longer despair: — ^it is but a prognostic and a 
presage that better ones are on the way to thee, — 

— ^For they themselves are on the way to thee, the last 
remnant of God among men — ^that is to say, all the men of 
great longing, of great loathing, of great satiety, 

— ^All who do not want to live unless they learn again to 
hope — ^unless they learn from thee, O Zarathiistra, the great 



Thus spake the king on the right, and seized the hand of 
Zarathustra in order to kiss it; but Zarathustra checked his 
veneration, and stepped back frightened, fleeing as it were, 
silently and suddenly into the far distance. After a little while, 
however, he was- again at home with his guests, looked at 
them with clear scrutinising eyes, and said: 

*'My guests, ye higher men, I will speak plain language and 
plainly with you. It is not for you that I have waited here in 
these mountains.” 

(” ‘Plain language and plainly?* Good God!” said here the 
king on the left to himself; “one seeth he doth not know the 
good Occidentals, this sage out of the Orient! 

But he meaneth ‘blunt language and bluntly — ^well! That 
is not the worst taste in these days!” ) 

“Ye may, verily, all of you be higher men,” continued Zara- 
thustra; “but for me — ^ye are neither high enough, nor strong 

For me, that is to say, for the inexorable which is now silent 
in me, but will not always be silent. And if ye appertain to me, 
still it is not as my right arm. 

For he who himself standeth, like you, on sickly and tender 
legs, wisheth above all to be treated indulgently, whether he be 
conscious of it or hide it from himself. 

My arms and my legs, however, I do not treat indulgently, 
1 do not treat my warriors indulgently: how then could ye be 
fit for my warfare? 

With you I should spoil all my victories. And many of you 
would tumble over if ye but heard the loud beating of my 

Moreover, ye are not sufficiently beautiful and well-bom for 
me. I require pure, smooth mirrors for my doctrines; on your 
surface even mine own likeness is distorted. 

3i6 thus spake zarathustra 

On your shoulders presseth many a burden, many a recol- 
lection; many a mischievous dwarf squatteth in your corners. 
There is concealed populace also in you. 

And though ye be high and of a higher type, much in you 
is crooked and misshapen. There is no smith in the world that 
could hammer you right and straight for me. 

Ye are only bridges: may higher ones pass over upon you! 
Ye signify steps: so do not upbraid him who ascendeth beyond 
you into his height! 

Out of your seed there may one day arise for me a genuine 
son and perfect heir: but that time is distant. Ye yourselves 
are not those unto whom my heritage and name belong. 

Not for you do I wait here in these mountains; not with you 
may I descend for the last time. Ye have come unto me only 
as a presage that higher ones are on the way to me, — 

— Not the men of great longing, of great loathing, of great 
satiety, and that which ye call the remnant of God; 

— ^Nay! Nay! Three times Nay! For others do I wait here 
in these mountains, and will not lift my foot from thence 
without them; 

— For higher ones, stronger ones, triumphanter ones, 
merrier ones, for such as are built squarely in body and soul: 
laughing lions must come! 

O my guests, ye strange ones — ^have ye yet heard nothing of 
my children? And that they are on the way to me? 

Do speak unto me of my gardens, of my Happy Isles, of my 
new beautiful race — ^why do ye not speak unto me thereof? 

This guests* -present do I solicit of your love, that ye speak 
unto me of my children. For them am I rich, for them I became 
poor: what have I not surrendered. 

What would I not surrender that I might have one thing: 



these children, this living plantation, these life-trees of my 
will and of my highest hope!'* 

Thus spake Zarathustra, and stopped suddenly in his dis- 
course: for his longing came over him, and he closed his eyes 
and his mouth, because of the agitation of his heart. And all 
his guests also were silent, and stood still and confounded: 
except only that the old soothsayer made signs with his hands 
and his gestures. 

•J2. The Supper 

For at this point the soothsayer interrupted the greeting of 
Zarathustra and his guests: he pressed forward as one who had 
no time to lose, sei2ed Zarathustra's hand and exclaimed: '*But 

One thing is more necessary than the other, so sayest thou 
thyself: well, one thing is now more necessary unto me than 
all others. 

A word at the right time: didst thou not invite me to table? 
And here are many who have made long journeys. Thou dost 
not mean to feed us merely with discourses? 

Besides, all of you have thought too much about freezing, 
drowning, suffocating, and other bodily dangers: none of you, 
however, have thought of my danger, namely, perishing of 
hunger — 

(Thus spake the soothsayer. When Zarathustra's animals, 
however, heard these words, they ran away in terror. For they 
saw that all they had brought home during the day would not 
be enough to fill the one soothsayer. ) 

''Likewise perishing of thirst,” continued the soothsayer. 
"And although I hear water splashing here like words of wis- 



dom — ^that is to say, plenteously and unweariedly, I — want 

Not every one is a bom water-drinker like Zarathustra. 
Neither doth water suit weary and withered ones: we deserve 
wine — it alone giveth immediate vigour and improvised 

On this occasion, when the soothsayer was longing for wine, 
it happened that the king on the left, the silent one, also found 
expression for once. took care,” said he, '*about wine, I, 
along with my brother the king on the right: we have enough 
of wine, — z. whole ass-load of it. So there is nothing lacking 
but bread.” 

"'Bread,” replied Zarathustra, laughing when he spake, "it 
is precisely bread that anchorites have not. But man doth not 
live by bread alone, but also by the flesh of good lambs, of 
which I have two: 

— These shall we slaughter quickly, and cook spicily with 
sage: it is so that I like them. And there is also no lack of 
roots and fruits, good enough even for the fastidious and 
dainty, — ^nor of nuts and other riddles for cracking. 

Thus will we have a good repast in a little while. But who- 
ever wisheth to eat with us must also give a hand to the work, 
even the kings. For with Zarathustra even a king may be a 

This proposal appealed to the hearts of all of them, save 
that the voluntary beggar objected to the flesh and wine and 

"J^t hear this glutton Zarathustra!” said he jokingly: "doth 
one go into caves and high mountains to make such repasts? 

Now indeed do I understand what he once taught us: 
'Blessed be moderate poverty!* And why he wisheth to do 
away with beggars.” 



**Be of good cheer/’ replied Zarathustra, “as I am. Abide 
by thy customs, thou excellent one: grind thy com, drink thy 
water, praise thy cooking, — ^if only it make thee glad! 

I am a law only for mine own; I am not a law for all. He, 
however, who belongeth unto me must be strong of bone and 
light of foot, — 

— ^Joyous in fight and feast, no sulker, no John o’ Dreams, 
ready for the hardest task as for the feast, healthy and hale. 

The best belongeth unto mine and me; and if it be not given 
us, then do we take it: — ^the best food, the purest sky, the 
strongest thoughts, the fairest women!” — 

Thus spake Zarathustra; the king on the right however 
answered and said: “Strange! Did one ever hear such sensible 
things out of the mouth of a wise man? 

And verily, it is the strangest thing in a wise man, if over 
and above, he be still sensible, and not an ass/’ 

Thus spake the king on the right and wondered; the ass 
however, with ill-will, said Ye-a to his remark. This however 
was the beginning of that long repast which is called “The 
Supper” in the history-books. At this there was nothing else 
spoken of but the higher man. 

The Higher Man 


When I came unto men for the first time, then did I commit 
the anchorite folly, the great folly: I appeared on the market- 


And when I spake unto all, I spake unto none. In the eve- 
ning, however, rope-dancers were my companions, and 
corpses; and I myself almost a corpse. 

With the new morning, however, there came unto me a new 
truth: then did I learn to say: **Of what account to me are 
market-place and populace and populace-noise and long popu- 

Ye higher men, learn this from me: On the market-place no 
one believeth in higher men. But if ye will speak there, very 
well! The populace, however, blinketh: **We are all equal.** 

”Ye higher men,’* — ^so blinketh the populace — “there are 
no higher men, we are all equal; man is man, before God — 
we are all equal!” 

Before God! — ^Now, however, this God hath died. Before 
the populace, however, we will not be equal. Ye higher men, 
away from the market-place! 

Before God! — ^Now however this God hath died! Ye higher 
men, this God was your greatest danger. 

Only since he lay in the grave have ye again arisen. Now 
only cometh the great noontide, now only doth the higher 
man become — ^master! 

Have ye understood this word, O my brethren? Ye are 
frightened: do your hearts turn giddy? Doth the abyss here 
yawn for you? Doth the hell-hound here yelp at you? 

Well! Take heart! ye higher men! Now only travaileth the 
mountain of the human future. God hath died: now do we 
desire — ^the Superman to live. 




The most careful ask to-day: '*How is man to be main- 
tained?** Zarathustra however asketh, as the first and only one: 
''How is man to be surpassed?” 

The Superman, I have at heart; that is the first and only thing 
to me — and not man: not the neighbour, not the poorest, not 
the sorriest, not the best. — 

O my brethren, what I can love in man is that he is an over- 
going and a down-going. And also in you there is much that 
maketh me love and hope. 

In that ye have despised, ye higher men, that maketh me 
hope. For the great despisers are the great reverers. 

In that ye have despaired, there is much to honour. For ye 
have not learned to submit yourselves, ye have not learned 
petty poliqr. 

For to-day have the petty people become master: they all 
preach submission and humility and policy and diligence and 
consideration and the long et cetera of petty virtues. 

Whatever is of the effeminate type, whatever originateth 
from the servile type, and especially the populace-mishmash: 
— that wisheth now to be master of all human destiny — O 
disgust! Disgust! Disgust! 

That asketh and asketh and never tireth: "How is man to 
maintain himself best, longest, most pleasantly?** Thereby — 
are they the masters of today. 

These masters of today — ^surpass them, O my brethren — 
these petty people: they are the Superman*s greatest danger! 

Surpass, ye higher men, the petty virtues, the petty policy, 
the sand-grain considerateness, the ant-hill trumpery, the piti- 


able comfortableness, the ^‘happiness of the greatest num- 

And rather despair than submit yourselves. And verily, I 
love you, because ye know not today how to live, ye higher 
men! For thus do ye live — ^best! 


Have ye courage, O my brethren? Are ye stout-hearted? Not 
the courage before witnesses, but anchorite and eagle courage, 
which not even a God any longer beholdeth? 

Cold souls, mules, the blind and the drunken, I do not call 
stout-hearted. He hath heart who knoweth fear, but vanquish- 
eth it; who seeth the abyss, but with pride. 

He who seeth the abyss, but with eagle’s eyes, — ^he who with 
eagle’s talons graspeth the abyss: he hath courage. 


"Man is evil” — so said to me for consolation, all the wisest 
ones. Ah, if only it be still true today! For the evil is man’s 
best force. 

"Man must become better and eviler” — ^so do 1 teach. The 
evilest is necessary for the Superman’s best. 

It may have been well for the preacher of the petty people 
to suffer and be burdened by men’s sin. I, however, rejoice in 
great sin as my great consolation . — 

Such things, however, are not said for long ears. Every word, 
also, is not suited for every mouth. These are fine far-away 
things: at them sheep’s claws shall not grasp! 




Ye higher men, think ye that I am here to put right what ye 
have put wrong? 

Or that I wished henceforth to make snugger couches for 
you sufferers? Or show you restless, miswandering, misclimb- 
ing ones, new and easier footpaths? 

Nay! Nay! Three times Nay! Always more, always better 
ones of your type shall succumb, — ^for ye shall always have it 
worse and harder. Thus only — 

— Thus only groweth man aloft to the height where the 
lightning striketh and shattereth him: high enough for the 

Towards the few, the long, the remote go forth my soul and 
my seeking: of what account to me are your many little, short 

Ye do not yet suffer enough for me! For ye suffer from your- 
selves, ye have not yet suffered from man. Ye would lie if yc 
spake otherwise! None of you suffereth from what 1 have suf* 


It is not enough for me that the lightning no longer doeth 
harm, I do not wish to conduct it away: it shall learn — ^to work 
for me . — 

My wisdom hath accumulated long like a doud, it becometh 
stiller and darker. So doeth all wisdom which shall one day 
bear lightnings . — 



Unto these men of today will I not be light, nor be called 
light. Them — ^will I blind: lightning of my wisdom! put out 
their eyes! 


Do not will anydiing beyond your power: tiiere is a bad 
falseness in those who will beyond thdr power. 

Especially when they will great things! For they awaken 
distrust in great things, these subtle false-coiners and stage- 
players: — 

— Until at last they are false towards themselves, squint- 
eyed, whited cankers, glossed over with strong words, parade 
virtues and brilliant false deeds. 

Take good care there, ye higher men! For nothing is mote 
precious to me, and rarer, than honesty. 

Is this today not that of the populace? The populace how- 
ever knoweth not what is great and what is small, what is 
straight and what is honest: it is innocently crooked, it ever 


Have a good distrust today, ye higher men, ye enheartened 
ones! Ye open-hearted ones! And keep your reasons secret! For 
this today is that of the populace. 

What the populace once learned to believe without reasons, 
who could — ^refute it to them by means of reasons? 

And on the market-place one convinceth with gestures. But 
reasons make the populace distrustful. 

And when truth hath once triumphed there, then ask your- 



selves with good distrust: "What strong error hath fought 
for it?” 

Be on your guard also against the learned! They hate you, 
because th^ are unproductive! They have cold, withered eyes 
before which every bird is unplumed. 

Such persons vaunt about not lying: but inability to lie is 
still far from being love to truth. Be on your guard! 

Freedom from fever is stiU far from being knowledge! 
Refrigerated spirits I do not believe in. He who cannot lie, 
doth not know what truth is. 


If ye would go up high, then use your own legs! Do not get 
yourselves carried aloft; do not seat yourselves on other peo- 
ple’s backs and heads! 

Thou hast mounted, however, on horseback? Thou now 
ridest briskly up to thy goal? Well, my friend! But thy lame 
foot is also with thee on horsdjadc! 

When thou readiest thy goal, when thou alightest from thy 
horse: precisely on thy height, thou higher man, — ^then wilt 
thou stumble! 


Ye creating ones, ye higher men! One is only pregnant with 
one’s own child. 

Do not let yourselves be imposed upon or put upon! Who 
then is your neighbour? Even if ye act "for your ndghbour” — 
ye still do not create for him! 


Unlearn, I pray you, this "for,'* ye creating ones: your very 
virtue wisheth you to have naught to do with ‘*for’' and **on 
account of” and ''because.” Against these false little words 
shall ye stop your ears. 

"For one’s neighbour,” is the virtue only of the petty people: 
there it is said "like and like,” and "hand washeth hand”: — 
they have neither the right nor the power for your self-seeking! 

In your self-seeking, ye creating ones, there is the foresight 
and foreseeing of the pregnant! What no one’s eye hath yet 
seen, namely, the fruit — ^this, sheltered! and saveth and nour- 
isheth your entire love. 

Where your entire love is, namely, with your child, there is 
also your entire virtue! Your work, your will is your "neigh- 
bour”: let no false values impose upon you! 


Ye creating ones, ye higher men! Whoever hath to give birth 
is sick; whoever hath given birth, however, is unclean. 

Ask women: one giveth birth, not because it giveth pleas- 
ure. The pain maketh hens and poets cackle. 

Ye creating ones, in you there is much undeanness. That is 
because ye have had to be mothers. 

A new child: oh, how much new filth hath also come into 
the world! Go apart! He who hath given birth shall wash his 


Be not virtuous beyond your powers! And seek nothing from 
yourselves opposed to probability! 



Walk in the footsteps in -which your fathers’ -virtue hath 
already walked! How would ye rise high, if your fathers’ -will 
should not rise with you? 

He, however, who would be a firsding, let him take care lest 
he also become a lastling! And where the -vices of ycHir fathers 
are, there should ye not set up as saints! 

He whose fathers were inclined for -women, and for strong 
wine and flesh of -wildboar swine; what would it be if he 
demanded chastity of himself? 

A folly would it be! Much, verily, doth it seem to me for 
such a one, if he should be the husband of one or of two or of 
three women. 

And if he foimded monasteries, and inscribed over their 
portals: '"The way to holiness,” — should still say: What good 
is it! it is a new folly! 

He hath founded for himself a penance-house and refuge- 
house: much good may it do! But I do not believe in it. 

In solitude there groweth what any one bringeth into it — 
also the brute in one’s nature. 'Thus is solitude inadvisable unto 

Hath there ever been anything filthier on earth than the 
saints of the wilderness? Around them was not only the devil 
loose — but also the swine. 


Shy, ashamed, awkward, like the tiger whose spring halh 
failed — ^thus, ye higher men, have I often seen you slink aside. 
A cast which ye made had failed. 

But what doth it matter, ye dice-players! Ye had not learned 


to play and mock, as one must play and mock! Do we not ever 
sit at a great table of mocking and playing? 

And if great diings have been a failure with you, have ye 
yourselves therefore — been a failure? And if ye yourselves 
have been a failure, hath man therefore — been a failure? 
If man, however, hadi been a failure: well then! never 


The higher its type, always the seldomer doth a thing suc- 
ceed. Ye higher men here, have ye not all — ^been failures? 

Be of good cheer; what doth it matter? How much is still 
possible! Learn to laugh at yourselves, as ye ought to 

What wonder even that ye have failed and only half-suc- 
ceeded, ye half-shattered ones! Doth not — ^man’s future strive 
and struggle in you? 

Man’s furthest, profoundest, star-higbest issues^ his prodi- 
gious powers— do not all these foam through one ano&er in 
your vessel? 

What wonder that many a vessel shattereth! Learn to laugh 
at yourselves, as ye ought to laugh! Ye higher men. Oh, how 
much is stiU possible! 

And verily, how much hath already succeeded! How rich is 
this earth in small, good, perfect things, in well-constituted 

Set around you small, good, perfect things, ye higher men. 
Their golden maturity healeth the heart. 'The perfect teacheth 
one to hope. 




What hath hitherto been the greatest sin here on earth? Was 
it not the word of him who said: "Woe unto them that iangh 

Did he himself find no cause for laughter on the earih? 
Then he sought badly. A child even findeth cause for it. 

He — did not love sufficiently: otherwise would he also have 
loved us, the laughing ones! But he hated and hooted us; wail- 
ing and teeth-gnashing did he promise us. 

Must one then curse immediately, when one doth not love? 
That — ^seemefh to me bad taste. Thus did he, however, this 
absolute one. He sprang from the populace. 

And he himself just did not love sufficiently; otherwise 
would he have raged less because people did not love him. All 
great love doth not seek love: — ^it seeketh more. 

Go out of the way of all such absolute ones! They are a poor 
sickly type, a populace-type: they look at this life with iU-will, 
th^ have an evil eye for this earth. 

Go out of the way of all such absolute ones! Th^ have heavy 
feet and sultry hearts: — ^they do not know how to dance. How 
could the earth be light to such ones! 


Tortuously do all good things come nigjb to their goal. Like 
cats they curve their backs, they purr inwardly with their ap- 
proaching happiness, — all good things laugh. 

His step betrayeth whether a person already walkeffi on his 


own path: just see me walk! He, however, who cometh nigh to 
his goal, danceth. 

And verily, a statue have I not become, not yet do I stand 
there stiff, stupid and stony, like a pillar; I love fast racing. 

And though there be on earth fens and dense afflictions, he 
who hath light feet runneth even across the mud, and danceth, 
as upon well-swept ice. 

Lift up your hearts, my brethren, high, higher! And do not 
forget your legs! Lift up also yomr legs, ye good dancers, and 
better still, if ye stand upon your heads! 


This crown of the laughter, this rose-garland crown: I my- 
self have put on this crown, I myself have consecrated my 
laughter. No one else have I found to-day potent enough for 

Zarathustra the dancer, 2Jatathustta the light one, who beck- 
oneth with his pinions, one ready for flight, bedconing unto 
all birds, ready and prepared, a blissfully light-spirited one: — 
Zarathustra the soothsayer, Zarathustra the sooth-laugher, 
no impatient one, no absolute one, one who loveth leaps and 
side-leaps; I myself have put on this crown! 


Lift up your hearts, my brethren, high, higher! And do not 
forget your legs! Lift up also your legs, ye good dancers, and 
better stUl if ye stand upon your heads! 



There are also heavy animals in a state of happiness, there 
are dub-footed ones from the beginning. Curiously do they 
exert themselves, like an dephant which endeavoureth to stand 
upon its head. 

Better, however, to be foolish with happiness than foolish 
with misfortune, better to dance awkwardly than walk lamely. 
So learn, I pray you, my wisdom, ye higher men; even the worst 
thing hath two good reverse sides, — 

— Even the worst thing hath good dandng-legs: so learn, 
I pray you, ye hi^er men, to put youisdves on your proper 

So unlearn, I pray you, the sorrow-sighing, and all the popu- 
lace-sadness! Oh, how sad tihe buffoons of the populace seem 
to me today! This today, however, is that of the populace. 


Do like unto the wind when it rusheth fordi from its moun- 
tain-caves: unto its own piping will it dance; the seas tremble 
and leap tmder its footsteps. 

That which giveth wings to asses, that which milketh the 
lionesses: — praised be that good, unruly spirit, which cometh 
like a hurricane unto all the present and unto all the popu- 
lace, — 

— Which is hostile to thistle-heads and puzzle-heads, and to 
all withered leaves and weeds: — ^praised be this wild, good, 
free spirit of the storm, which danceth upon fens and afflic- 
tions, as upon meadows! 

Which hateth the consumptive populace-dogs, and all the 
ill-constituted, sullen brood: — praised be this spirit of all free 


^irits, the laughing storm, which bloweth dust into the eyes 
of all the mdanopic and melancholic! 

Ye higher men, the worst thing in you is that ye have none 
of you learned to dance as ye ought to dance — ^to dance beyond 
yourselves! What doth it matter that ye ^ve failed! 

How many things are still possible! So learn to laugh be- 
yond yourselves! Lift up your hearts, ye good dancers, high! 
higgler! And do not forget the good laughter! 

This CTOwn of the laughter, this rose-garland crown; to you, 
my brethren, do I cast this aown! Laughing have I consecrated; 
ye higher men, learn, I pray you — to laugh! 

7 ^. The Song of Melancholy 


When Zarathustra spake these sayings, he stood nigh to the 
entrance of his cave; with the last words, however, he slipped 
away from his guests, and fled for a little while into the open 

pure odours around me,’' cried he, **0 blessed stillness 
around me! But where are mine animals? Hither, hither, mine 
eagle and my serpent! 

Tell me, mine animals: these higher men, all of them — do 
they perhaps not smdl well? O pure odours around me! Now 
only do I know and feel how I love you, mine animals/’ 

— ^And 2^arathustra said once more: '1 love you, mine ani- 
mals!” The eagle, however, and the serpent pressed close to 
him when he spake these words, and looked up to him. In this 



attitude were they all three silent together, and sniffed and 
sipped the good air with one another. For the air here outside 
was better than with the higher men. 

Hardly, however, had Zarathustra left the cave when the 
old magician got up, looked cunningly about him, and said: 
''He is gone! 

And already, ye higher men — ^let me tickle you with this 
complimentary and flattering name, as he himself doeth — 
already doth mine evil spirit of deceit and magic attack me, 
my melancholy devil, 

— Which is an adversary to this Zarathustra from the very 
heart: forgive it for this! Now doth it wish to conjure before 
you, it hath just its hour; in vain do I struggle with this evil 

Unto all of you, whatever honours ye like to assume in your 
names, whether ye call yourselves 'the free spirits* or 'the con- 
scientious,* Of ‘the penitents of the spirit,* or ‘the unfettered,* 
or 'the great longers,* — 

— ^Unto all of you, who like me suffer from the great loath- 
ing, to whom the old God hath died, and as yet no new God 
lieth in cradles and swaddling clothes — ^unto all of you is mine 
evil spirit and magic-devil favourable. 

I know you, ye higher men, I know him, — know also this 
fiend whom I love in spite of me, this Zarathustra: he himself 
often seemeth to me like the beautiful mask of a saint, 

— ^Like a new strange mummery in which mine evil spirit, 
the melancholy devil, delighteth: — love Zarathustra, so dcfEh 
it often seem to me, for the sake of mine evil spirit. — 


But already doth it attack me and constrain me, this spirit of 
melancholy, this evening-twilight devil: and verily, ye higher 
men, it hath a longing — 

— ^Open your eyes! — ^it hath a longing to come naked, 
whether male or female, I do not yet know; but it cometh, it 
constraineth me, alas! open your wits! 

The day dieth out, unto all things cometh now the evening, 
also unto the best things; hear now, and see, ye higher men, 
what devil — ^man or woman — ^this spirit of evening-melan- 
choly is!” 

Thus spake the old magician, looked cunningly about him, 
and then seized his harp. 


In evening’s limpid air. 

What time the dew’s soothings 
Unto the earth downpour. 

Invisibly and unheard — 

For tender shoe-gear wear 

The soothing dews, like all that's kind-gentle — : 

Bethinkst thou then, bethinkst thou, burning heart. 

How once thou thirstedest 

For heaven’s kindly teardrops and dew's down-drop- 

All singed and weary thirstedest, 

What time on yellow grass-pathways 
Wicked, occidental sunny glances 
Through sombre trees about thee sported, 

Blindingly sunny glow-glances, gladly-hurting? 



**Of truth the wooer? Thou?'’ — so taunted they* — 
''Nay! Merely poet! 

A brute insidious, plundering, grovelling. 

That aye must lie. 

That wittingly, wilfully, aye must lie: 

For booty lusting. 

Motley masked. 

Self -hidden, shrouded. 

Himself his booty — 

He — of truth the wooer? 

Nay! Mere fool! Mere poet! 

Just motley speaking. 

From mask of fool confusedly shouting, 
Circumambling on fabricated word-bridges. 

On motley rainbow-arches, 

’Twixt the spurious heavenly. 

And spurious earthly. 

Round us roving, round xzs soaring, — 

Mere fool! Mere poet! 

He — of tmth the wooer? 

Not still, stiS, smooth and cold. 

Become an image, 

A godlike statue. 

Set up in front of temples. 

As a God's own door-guard: 

Nay! hostile to all such truthfulness-statues. 

In every desert homelier than at temples. 

With cattish wantonness. 

Through every window leaping 
Quickly into chances. 


Every wild forest a-sniflSing, 

Greedily-longingly, sniffing, 

That thou, in wild forests, 

’Mong the motley-speckled fierce creatures, 

Shouldest rove, sinful-sound and fine-coloured. 

With longing lips smacking, 

Blessedly mocking, blessedly hellish, blessedly blood- 

Robbing, skulking, lying — ^roving: — 

Or unto eagles like which fixedly. 

Long adown the precipice look, 

Adown their precipice: 

Oh, how they whirl down now. 

Thereunder, therein. 

To ever deeper profoundness whirling! — 



With aim aright. 

With quivering flight. 

On lambkins pouncing. 

Headlong down, sore-hungry. 

For lambkins longing, 

Fierce ’gainst all lamb-spirits. 

Furious-fierce 'gainst all that look 
Sheeplike, or lambeyed, or crisp-woolly, 

— Grey, with lambsheep kindliness! 

Even thus. 

Eaglelike, j)antherlike, 

Are the poet’s desires, 

Are thine own desires ’neath a thousand guises. 



Thou fool! Thou poet! 

Thou who all mankind viewedst — 

So God, as sheep — : 

The God to rend within mankind. 

As the sheep in mankind. 

And in rending laughing — 

That, that is thine own blessedness! 

Of a panther and eagle — blessedness! 

Of a poet and fool — ^the blessedness!'" — — 

In evening's limpid air. 

What time the moon's sickle. 

Green, 'twixt the purple-glowings. 

And jealous, steal'th forth: 

— Of day the foe. 

With every step in secret. 

The rosy garland-hammcxks 
Downsickling, till they've sunken 
Down nightwards, faded, downsunken: — 

Thus had I sunken one day 
From mine own truth-insanity. 

From mine own fervid day-longings, 

Of day aweary, sick of sxmshine, 

— Slink downwards, evenwards, shadowwards: 

By one sole trueness 
All scorched and thirsty: 

— Bethinkst thou still, bethinkst thou, burning heart. 
How then thou thirstedest? — 

T hat 1 should banned he 
From all the trueness! 

Mere fool! Mere poet! 



75 . Science 

Thus sang the magician; and all who were present went like 
birds unawares into the net of his artful and melancholy volup- 
tuousness. Only the spiritually conscientious one had not been 
caught: he at once snatched the harp from the magician and 
called out: “Air! Let in good air! Let in Zarathustra! Thou 
makest this cave sultry and poisonous, thou bad old magt- 


Thou seducest, thou false one, thou subtle one, to unknown 
desires and deserts. And alas, that such as thou should talk 
and make ado about the truth! 

Alas, to all free spirits who are not on their guard against 
such magicians! It is all over with their freedom: thou teachest 
and temptest back into prisons, — 

— ^Thou old melancholy devil, out of thy lament soimdeth 
a lurement: thou resemblest those who with their praise of 
chastity secretly invite to voluptuousness!" 

Thus spake the conscientious one; the old magician, how- 
ever, looked about him, enjoying his triumph, and on that 
account put up with the aimoyance which the conscientious one 
caused him. “Be still!" said he with modest voice, “good songs 
want to re-echo well; after good songs one should be long 

Thus do all those present, the higher men. Thou, however, 
bast perhaps understood but little of my song? In thee there 
is little of the magic spirit," 

“Thou praisest me," replied the conscientious one, “in that 
thou separatest me from thyself; very well! But, ye others, 
what do I see? Ye still sit there, all of you, with lusting eyes — : 



Ye free spirits, whither hath your freedom gone! Ye a1fnfv«;| 
seem to me to resemble those who have long looked at bad 
girls dancing naked: your souls themselves dance! 

In you, ye higjier men, there must be more of that which (he 
magician calleth his evil spirit of magic and deceit: — we tu u ^ t 
indeed be different 

And verily, we spake and thought long enough together ere 
Zarathustra came home to his cave, for me not to be unaware 
that we are different 

We seek different things even here aloft, ye and I. For I sed{ 
more security; on that account have I come to Zarathustra. Foi 
he is still the most steadfast tower and will — 

— Today, when everything tottereth, when all the earth 
quaketh. Ye, however, when I see what eyes ye make, it almost 
seemeth to me that ye seek more insecurity, 

— ^More horror, more danger, more earthquake. Ye long (it 
almost seemeth so to me — ^forgive my presumption, ye higher 
men) — 

— Y e long for the worst and dangerousest life, which fright- 
eneth me most, — ^for the life of wild beasts, for forests, caves, 
steep mountains and labyrinthine gorges. 

And it is not those who lead out of danger that please you 
best, but those who lead you away from all paths, the mis- 
leaders. But if such longing in you be actud, it seemeth to me 
nevertheless to be impossible. 

For fear — that is man's ori^nal and fundamental feeling; 
through fear everything is explained, original sin and original 
virtue. Through fear there grew also my virtue, that is to say: 

For fear of wild animals — ^that hath been longest fostered 
in tna.fl , inclusive of the animal which he concealeth and fear- 
eth in himself: — ^Zarathustra calleth it 'the beast inside.’ 


Such prolonged andent fear, at last become subtle, spir- 
itual and intellectual — at present, me thinketh, it is called 
Science ." — 

Thus spake the consdentious one; but Zarathustra, who had 
just come back into his cave and had heard and divined the last 
discourse, threw a handful of roses to the consdentious one, 
and laughed on account of his "trulis.” “Why!” he exdaimed, 
"what did I hear just now? Verily, it seemeth to me, thou art a 
fool, or else I myself am one: and quietly and qmddy will I 
put thy 'truth’ upside down. 

For jear — ^is an exception with us. Courage, however, and 
adventure, and delight in the uncertain, in the unattempted — 
courage seemeth to me the entire primitive history of man. 

The wildest and most courageous animals hath he envied 
and robbed of all their virtues: thus only did he become — ^man. 

This courage, at last become subtle, spiritual and intellec- 
tual, this human courage, with eagle’s pinions and serpent’s 
wisdom: this, it seemeth to me, is called at present — ” 

"Zarathustred" cried all of them there assembled, as if with 
one voice, and burst out at the same time into a great laugh- 
ter; there arose, however, from them as it were a heavy cloud. 
Even the magician laughed, and said wisely: "Well! It is gone, 
mine evil spirit! 

And did I not myself warn you against it when I said that 
it was a deceiver, a lying and deceiving spirit? 

Especially when it showeth itself naked. But what can I do 
with regard to its tricks! Have I created it and the world? 

Well! Let us be good again, and of good cheer! And al- 
though Zarathustra looketh with evil eye — ^just see him! he 
disliketh me — : 

— ^Ere night cometh will he again learn to love and laud me; 
he cannot live long without committing such follies. 


He — ^loveth his eaemies: this ait knowedi he better tiian any 
one I have seen. But he taketh revenge for it — on his friends!” 

Thus spake the old magician, and the higher men applauded 
him; so that Zarathustra went round, and mischievously and 
lovingly shook hands with his friends, — ^like one who hath to 
make amends and apologise to every one for something. When 
however he had thereby come to the door of his cave, lo, then 
had he again a longing for the good air outside, and for his 
animals, — and wished to steal out. 

67 . Among Daughters of the Desert 

"Go NOT away!” said then the wanderer who called himself 
Zarathustra’s shadow, "abide with us — otherwise the old 
gloomy affliction might again fall upon us. 

Now hath that old magician given us of his worst for our 
good, and lo! the good, pious pope there hath tears in his eyes, 
and hath quite embarked again upon the sea of melancholy. 

Those kings may well put on a good air before us still: for 
that have they learned best of us all at present! Had th^ how- 
ever no one to see them, I wager that with them also the bad 
game would again commence, — 

— ^The bad game of drifting clouds, of damp melancholy, 
of curtained heavens, of stolen suns, of howling autumn- 

— ^The bad game of our howling and crying for help! Abide 
with us, O 2^thustra! Here there is much concealed misery 



that wisheth to speak, much evening, much cloud, much damp 

Thou hast nourished us with strong food for men, and 
powerful proverbs: do not let the weakly, womanly spirits 
attack us anew at dessert! 

Thou alone makest the air around thee strong and clear. Did 
I ever find anywhere on earth such good air as with thee in thy 

Many lands have I seen, my nose hath learned to test and 
estimate many kinds of air: but with thee do my nostrils taste 
their greatest delight! 

Unless it be, — ^unless it be — do forgive an old recollection! 
Forgive me an old after-dinner song, which I once composed 
amongst daughters of the desert: — 

For with them was there equally good, clear, Oriental air; 
there was I furthest from doudy, damp, melancholy Old- 

Then did I love such Oriental maidens and other blue king- 
doms of heaven, over which hang no douds and no thoughts. 

Ye would not believe how charmingly they sat there, when 
they did not dance, profound, but without thoughts, like little 
secrets, like beribboned riddles, like dessert-nuts — 

Many-hued and foreign, forsooth! but without clouds: rid- 
dles which can be guessed: to please such maidens I then 
composed an after-dinner psalm.” 

Ihus spake the wanderer who called himself Zarathustra’s 
shadow; and before any one answered him, he had seized the 
harp of the old magician, crossed his legs, and looked calmly 
and sagely around him: — with his nostrils, however, he in- 
haled the air slowly and questioningly, like one who in new 
countries tasteth new foreign air. Afterward he began to sing 
with a kind of roaring. 




The deserts grow: woe him who doth them hide! 


In effect solemnly! 

A worthy beginning! 

Afric manner, solemnly! 

Of a lion worthy, 

Or perhaps of a virtuous howl-monkey — 

— ^But it’s naught to you, 

Ye friendly damsels dearly loved. 

At whose own feet to me, 

'The first occasion. 

To a European under palm-trees. 

At seat is now granted. Selah. 

Wonderful, truly! 

Here do I sit now, 

'The desert nigh, and yet I am 
So far still from the desert. 

Even in naught yet deserted: 

That is, I’m swallowed down 
By this the smallest oasis — : 

— ^It opened up just yawning. 

Its loveliest mouth agape. 

Most sweet-odoured of all moufiilets: 

'Then fell I ri^t in. 

Right down, right through — ^in ’mong you. 
Ye friendly damsels dearly loved! Selah. 



Hail! hail! to that whale, fishlike, 

If it thus for its guest’s convenience 
Made things nice! — (ye well know. 

Surely, my learned allusion?) 

Hail to its belly. 

If it had e’er 

A such loveliest oasis-belly 

As this is: though however I doubt about i^ 

— ^With this come I out of Old-Europe, 

'That doubt’th more eagerly than doth any 
Elderly married woman. 

May the Lord improve it! 


Here do I sit now. 

In this die smallest oasis. 

Like a date indeed, 

Brown, quite sweet, gold-suppvurating. 

For rounded mouth of maiden longing. 

But yet still more for youthful, maidlike. 
Ice-cold and snow-white and incisory 
Front teeth: and for such assuredly. 

Pine the hearts all of ardent date-fruits. Selah. 

To the there-named south-fruits now. 

Similar, all-too-similar. 

Do I lie here; by little 
Flying insects 

Round-sniffled and round-played. 

And also by yet littler, 

Foolisher, and peocabler 
Wishes and phantasies, — 



Environed by you, 

Ye silent, presentientest 

Dudu and Suleika, 

— Rounds phinxed, that into one word 
I may crowd much feeling: 

(Forgive me, O God, 

All such speech-sinning!) 

— Sit I here the best of air sniffling, 

Paradisal air, truly. 

Bright and buoyant air, golden-mottled. 

As goodly air as ever 
From lunar orb downfell — 

Be it by hazard. 

Or supervened it by arrogancy? 

As the andent poets relate it. 

But doubter, I’m now calling it 
In question: with this do I come indeed 
Out of Europe, 

That doubt’& more eagerly than doth any 
Elderly married woman. 

May the Lord improve it! 


This tihe finest air drinking. 

With nostrils out-swelled like goblets, 

T.ar1fifig future, lacking remembrances. 

Thus do I sit here, ye 
Friendly damsels dearly loved. 

And look at the palm-tree diere. 

How it, to a dance-girl, like. 


Doth bow and bend and on its haunches bob, 

— One doth it too, when one view’th it long! — 

To a dance-girl like, who as it seem'th to me. 

Too long, and dangerously persistent, 

Always, always, just on single leg hath stood? 

— ^Then forgot she thereby, as it seem'th to me, 

The other leg? 

For vainly I, at least. 

Did search for the amissing 
Fellow- jewel 

— ^Namely, the other leg — 

In the sanctified predncts. 

Nigh her very dearest, very tenderest, 

Flapping and fluttering and flickering skirting. 

Yea, if ye should, ye beauteous friendly ones. 

Quite take my word : 

She hath, alas! last it! 

Hu! Hu! Hu! Hu! Hu! 

It is away! 

For ever away! 

The other leg! 

Oh, pity for that loveliest other leg! 

Where may it now tarry, all- forsaken weeping? 

The lonesomest leg? 

In fear perhaps before a 
Furious, yellow, blond and curled 
Leonine monster? Or perhaps even 
Gnawed away, nibbled badly — 

Most wretched, woeful! woeful! nibbled badly! Selah. 

Oh, weep ye not. 

Gentle spirits! 


Weep ye not, ye 

Date-fruit spirits! Milk-bosoms! 

Ye sweetwood-heart 

Weep ye no more. 

Pallid Dudu! 

Be a man, Suleika! Bold! Bold! 

— Or dse should diere perhaps 
Something strengthening, heart-strengthening. 

Here most proper be? 

Some inspiring text? 

Some solemn exhortation? — 

Ha! Up now! honour! 

Moral honour! European honour! 

Blow again, continue, 

BeUows-box of virtue! 


Once more thy roaring. 

Thy moral roaring! 

As a virtuous lion 

Nigh the daughters of deserts roaring! 

— ^For virtue’s out-howl. 

Ye very dearest maidens, 

Is more than every 

European fervour, European hot-hunger! 

And now do I stand here. 

As European, 

I can’t be different, God’s help to me! 


The deserts grow: woe him who doth them hide! 



The Awakening 


After the song of the wanderer and shadow, the cave became 
all at once full of noise and laughter: and since the assembled 
guests all spake simultaneously, and even the ass, encouraged 
thereby, no longer remained silent, a little aversion and scorn 
for his visitors came over Zarathustra, although he rejoiced at 
their gladness. For it seemed to him a sign of convalescence. 
So he slipped out into the open air and spake to his animals. 

'*Whitlxer hath their distress now gone?*' said he, and 
already did he himself feel relieved of his petty disgust — 
'Vith me, it seemeth that they have unlearned their cries of 

— Though, alas! not yet their crying/" And Zarathustra 
stopped his ears, for just then did the Ye-a of the ass mix 
strangely with the noisy jubilation of those higher men. 

"They are merry,” he began again, '*and who knoweth? 
perhaps at their host's expense; and if they have learned of me 
to laugh, still it is not my laughter they have learned. 

But what matter about that! They are old people: they re- 
cover in their own way, they laugh in their own way; mine ears 
have already endured worse and have not become peevish. 

This day is a victory: he already yieldeth, he fleeth, the spirit 
of gravity, mine old arch-enemy! How well this day is about to 
end, which began so badly and gloomily! 

And it is about to end. Already cometh the evening: over 
the sea rideth it hither, the good rider! How it bobbeth, the 
blessed one, the home-returning one, in its purple saddles! 



The sky gazeth brightly thereon, the world lieth deep. Oh, 
all ye strange ones who have come to me, it is already worth 
while to have lived with me!” 

Thus spake Zarathustra. And again came the cries and 
laughter of the higher men out of the cave: then began he 

''They bite at it, my bait taketh, there departeth also from 
them their enemy, the spirit of gravity. Now do they learn to 
laugh at themselves: do I hear rightly? 

My virile food taketh effect, my strong and savoury sayings: 
and verily, I did not nourish them with flatulent vegetables! 
But with warrior-food, with conqueror-food: new desires did 
I awaken. 

New hopes are in their arms and legs, their hearts expand. 
They find new words, soon will their spirits breathe wanton- 

Such food may sure enough not be proper for children, nor 
even for longing girls old and young. One persuadeth their 
bowels otherwise; I am not their physician and teacher. 

The disgust departeth from these higher men; well! that is 
my victory. In my domain they become assured; all stupid 
shame fleeth away; they empty themselves. 

They empty their hearts, good times return unto them, they 
keep holiday and ruminate , — ihey become thankful. 

That do I take as the best sign: they become thankful. Not 
long will it be ere they devise festivals, and put up memorials 
to their old joys. 

They are convalescents^ Thus spake Zarathustra joyfully 
to his heart and gazed outward; his animals, however, pressed 
up to him, and honoured his happiness and his silence. 




All on a sudden however, Zarathustra's ear was frightened: 
for the cave which had hitherto been full of noise and laugh- 
ter, became all at once still as death; — ^his nose, however, smelt 
a sweet-scented vapour and incense-odour, as if from burning 

'*What happeneth? What are they about?** he asked himself, 
and stole up to the entrance, that he might be able unobserved 
to see his guests. But wonder upon wonder! what was he then 
obliged to behold with his own eyes! 

"They have all of them become pious again, they pray^ they 
are mad!** — ^said he, and was astonished beyond measure. And 
forsooth! all these higher men, the two kings, the pope out of 
service, the evil magician, the voluntary beggar, the wanderer 
and shadow, the old soothsayer, the spiritually conscientious 
one, and the ugliest man — ^they all lay on their knees like chil- 
dren and credulous old women, and worshipped the ass. And 
just then began the ugliest man to gurgle and snort, as if some- 
thing unutterable in him tried to find expression; when, how- 
ever, he had actually found words, behold! it was a pious, 
strange litany in praise of the adored and censed ass. And the 
litany sounded thus: 

Amen! And glory and honour and wisdom and thanks and 
praise and strength be to our God, from everlasting to ever- 

— ^The ass, however, here brayed Ye-a. 

He carried our burdens, he hath taken upon him the form 
of a servant, he is patient of heart and never saith Nay; and he 
who loveth his God chastiseth him. 



— The ass, however, here brayed Ye-a. 

He speaketh not:except that he ever saith Yea to the world 
which he created: thus doth he extol his world. It is his artful- 
ness that speaketh not: thus is he rarely found wrong. 

— The ass, however, here brayed Ye-a. 

Uncomely goeth he through the world. Grey is the favourite 
colour in which he wrappeth his virtue. Hath he spirit, then 
doth he conceal it; every one, however, believeth in his long 

— The ass, however, here brayed Ye-a. 

What hidden wisdom it is to wear long ears, and only to say 
Yea and never Nay! Hath he not created the world in his own 
image, namely, as stupid as possible? 

— ^The ass, however, here brayed Ye-a. 

Thou goest straight and crooked ways; it concemeth thee 
little what seemeth straight or crooked unto us men. Beyond 
good and evil is thy domain. It is thine innocence not to know 
what innenfence is. 

— ^The ass, however, here brayed Ye-a. 

Lo! how thou spurnest none from thee, neither beggars nor 
kings. Thou sufferest little children to come unto thee, and 
when the bad boys decoy thee, then sayest thou simply, Ye-a. 

— ^The ass, however, here brayed Ye-a. 

Thou lovest she-asses and fresh figs, thou art no food- 
despiser. A thistle tiddeth thy heart when thou chancest to be 
hungry. There is the wisdom of a God therein. 

— ^Ihe ass, however, here brayed Ye-a. 



y8. The Ass-Festival 


At this place in the litany, however, Zarattustra could no 
longer control himself; he himself cried out Ye-a, louder even 
than the ass, and sprang into the midst of his maddened guests. 
"Whatever are you about, ye grown-up children?” he ex- 
claimed, pulling up the praying ones from the ground. "Alas, 
if any one else, except Zarathustra, had seen you: 

Every one would think you the worst blasphemers, or the 
very foolishest old women, with your new belief! 

And thou thyself, thou old pope, how is it in accordance 
with thee, to adore an ass in such a manner as God?” — 

"O Zarathustra,” answered the pope, "forgive me, but in 
divine matters I am more enlightened even than thou. And it 
is right that it should be so. 

Better to adore God so, in this form, than in no form at all! 
Think over this saying, mine exalted friend: thou wilt readily 
divine that in such a saying there is wisdom. 

He who said 'God is a Spirit’ — ^made the greatest stride and 
slide hitherto made on earth towards unbelief: such a dictum 
is not easily amended again on earth! 

Mine old heart leapeth and boundeth because there is still 
something to adore on earth. Forgive it, O Zarathustra, to an 
old, pious pontiff-heart! — ” 

— "And thou,” said Zarathustra to the wanderer and 
shadow, "thou callest and thinkest thyself a free spirit? And 
thou here practisest such idolatry and hierolatry? 



Worse verily, doest diou here than with thy bad brown girls, 
thou bad, new believer!” 

"It is sad enough,” answered the wanderer and shadow, 
"thou art right; but how can I help it! The old God liveth 
again, O Zarathustra, thou mayst say what thou wilt. 

The ugliest man is to blame for it all: he hath reawakened 
him. And if he say that he once killed him, with Gods death 
is always just a prejudice.” 

— "And thou,” said Zarathustra, "thou bad old magician, 
what didst thou do! Who ought to believe any longer in thee 
in this free age, when the^j/ believest in such divine donkeyism? 

It was a stupid thing that thou didst; how couldst thou, a 
shrewd man, do such a stupid thing!” 

"O Zarathustra,” answered the shrewd magician, "thou art 
right, it was a stupid thing, — ^it was also repugnant to me.” 

— "And thou even,” said Zarathustra to the spiritually con- 
scientious one, "consider, and put thy finger to thy nose! Doth 
nothing go against thy conscience here.^ Is thy spirit not too 
cleanly for this praying and the fumes of those devotees?” 

"There is something therein,” said the spiritually conscien- 
tious one, and put his finger to his nose, "there is something in 
this spectacle which even doeth good to my conscience. 

Perhaps I dare not believe in God : certain it is however, that 
God seemeth to me most worthy of belief in this form. 

God is said to be eternal, according to the testimony of the 
most pious: he who hath so much time taketh his time. As slow 
and as stupid as possible: thereby can such a one nevertheless 
go very far. 

And he who hath too much spirit might well become infatu- 
ated with stupidity and folly. Think of thyself, O Zarathustra! 

Thou thyself — ^verily! even thou couldst well become an 
ass through superabundance of wisdom. 



Doth not the true sage willingly walk on the crookedest 
paths? The evidence teacheth it, O Zarathustra , — thme own 

— "And thou thyself, finally,” said Zarathustra, and turned 
towards the ugliest man, who still lay on the ground stretch- 
ing up his arm to the ass (for he gave it wine to drink) . "Say, 
thou nondescript, what hast thou been about! 

Thou seemest to me transformed, thine eyes glow, the man- 
tle of the sublime covereth thine ugliness: what didst thou do? 

Is it then true what they say, that thou hast again awakened 
him? And why? Was he not for good reasons killed and made 
away with? 

Thou thyself seemest to me awakened: what didst thou do? 
why didst thou turn roimd? Why didst thou get converted? 
Speak, thou nondesaipt!” 

"O Zarathustra,” answered die ugliest man, "thou art a 

Whether he yet liveth, or again liveth, or is thoroughly dead 
— ^which of us both knowetfa that best? I ask thee. 

One thing however do I know, — ^from thyself did I learn it 
once, O Zarathustra: he who wanteth to kill most thoroughly, 

'Not by wrath but by laughter doth one kill’ — ^thus spakest 
thou once, O Zarathustra, thou hidden one, thou destroyer 
without wrath, thou dangerous saint, — ^thou art a rogue!” 


Then, however, did it come to pass that Zarathustra, aston- 
ished at such merely roguish answers, jumped bade to the door 



of his cave, and turning towards all his guests, cried out with 
a strong voice: 

ye wags, all of you, ye buflFoons! Why do ye dissemble 
and disguise yourselves before me! 

How the hearts of all of you convulsed with delight and 
wickedness, because ye had at last become again like little 
children — namely, pious, — 

— ^Because ye at last did again as children do — namely, 
prayed, folded your hands and said *good God'! 

But now leave, I pray you, this nursery, mine own cave, 
where today all childishness is carried on. Cool down, here 
outside, your hot child-wantonness and heart-tumult! 

To be sure: except ye become as little children ye shall not 
enter into that kingdom of heaven.” (And Zarathustra pointed 
aloft with his hands.) 

**But we do not at all want to enter into the kingdom of 
heaven: we have become men , — so we want the kingdom of 


And once more began Zarathustra to speak. ''O my new 
friends,” said he, — * ye strange ones, ye higher men, how well 
do ye now please me, — 

— Since ye have again become joyful! Ye have, verily, all 
blossomed forth: it seemeth to me that for such flowers as you, 
new festivals are required. 

— K little valiant nonsense, some divine service and ass- 
festival, some old joyful Zarathustra fool, some blusterer to 
blow your souls bright. 


Forget not this night and this ass-festival, ye higher men! 
That did ye devise when with me, fliat do I take as a good 
omen, — such things only the convalescents devise! 

And should ye celebrate it again, this ass-festival, do it from 
love to yourselves, do it also from love to me! And in remem- 
brance of me!" 

Thus spake Zarathustra. 

yg. The Drunken Song 


Meanwhile one after another had gone out into the open air, 
and into the cool, thoughtful night; Zarathustra himself, how- 
ever, led the ugliest man by the hand, that he might show him 
his night-world, and the great round moon, and the silvery 
water-falls near his cave. There they at last stood still beside 
one another; all of them old people, but with comforted, brave 
hearts, and astonished in themselves that it was so well with 
them on earth; the mystery of the night, however, came nigher 
and nigher to their hearts. And anew Zarathustra thought to 
himself: **Oh, how well do they now please me, these higher 
men!” — ^but he did not say it aloud, for he respected their 
happiness and their silence. — 

Then, however, there happened that which in this astonish- 
ing long day was most astonishing: the ugliest man began once 
more and for the last time to gurgle and snort, and when he 



had at length found expression, behold! there sprang a ques- 
tion plump and plain out of his mouth, a good, deep, dear 
question, which moved the hearts of all who listened to him. 

friends, all of you,*’ said the ugliest man, "what fhmVr. 
ye? For the sake of this day — I am for the first time content to 
have lived mine entire life. 

And that I testify so much is still not enough for me. It 
is worth while living on the earth: one day, one festival with 
Zarathustra, hath taught me to love the earth. 

'Was — ^lifeP’ will I say unto death. 'Well! Once 


My friends, what think ye? Will ye not, like me, say imto 
death: 'Was — ^life? For the sake of Zarathustra, wefll 

Once morel* ** 

Thus spake the ugliest man; it was not, however, far from 
midnight. And what took place then, think ye? As soon as the 
higher men heard his question, they became all at once con- 
sdous of their transformation and convalescence, and of him 
who was the cause thereof : then did they rush up to Zarathus- 
tra, thanking, honouring, caressing him, and kissing his hands, 
each in his own peculiar way; so that some laughed and some 
wept. The old soothsayer, however, danced with delight; and 
though he was then, as some narrators suppose, full of sweet 
wine, he was certainly still fuller of sweet life, and had re- 
nounced all weariness. There are even those who narrate that 
the ass then danced: for not in vain had the ugliest man previ- 
ously given it wine to drink. That may be the case, or it may be 
otherwise; and if in truth the ass did not dance that evening, 
there nevertheless happened then greater and rarer wonders 
than the dancing of an ass would have been. In short, as the 
proverb of Zarathustra saith: "What doth it matter!** 




When, however, this took place with the ugliest man, Zara- 
thustra stood there like one drunken: his glance dulled, his 
tongue faltered and his feet staggered. And who could divine 
what thoughts then passed through Zarathustra’s soul? Ap- 
parently, however, his spirit retreated and fled in advance and 
was in remote distances, and as it were 'wandering on high 
mountain-ridges,’* as it standeth written, “ ’twixt two seas, 

— ^Wandering *twixt the past and the future as a heavy 
cloud/' Gradually, however, while the higher men held him 
in their arms, he came back to himself a little, and resisted 
with his hands the crowd of the honouring and caring ones; 
but he did not speak. All at once, however, he turned his head 
quickly, for he seemed to hear something: then laid he his 
finger on his mouth and said: ^^Come!” 

And immediately it became still and mysterious round 
about; from the depth however there came up slowly the sound 
of a clock-bell. Zarathustra listened thereto, like the higher 
men; then, however, laid he his finger on his mouth the second 
time, and said again: ^^Come! Come! It is getting on to mid- 
night!” — ^and his voice had changed. But still he had not 
moved from the spot. Then it became yet stiller and more mys- 
terious, and everything hearkened, even the ass, and Zarathus- 
tra's noble animals, the eagle and the serpent, — ^likewise the 
cave of Zarathustra and the big cool moon, and the night itself. 
Zarathustra, however, laid his hand upon his mouth for the 
third time, and said: 

Come! Come! Come! Let us now wander! It is the hour: 
let us wander into the night! 




Ye higher men, it is getting on to midnight: then will I say 
something into your ears, as that old clock-bell saith it into 
mine ear, — 

— As mysteriously, as frightfully, and as cordially as that 
midnight clock-bell speaketh it to me, which hath experienced 
more than one man: 

— Which hath already counted the smarting throW>ings of 
your fathers’ hearts — ^ah! ah! how it sigheth! how it laugheth 
in its dream! the old, deep, deg> midnight! 

Hush! Hush! 'Then is there many a thing heard which may 
not be heard by day; now however, in the cool air, when even 
all the tumult of your hearts hath become still, — 

— ^Now doth it speak, now is it heard, now doth it steal into 
overwakeful, nocturnal souls: ah! ah! how the midnight sigh- 
eth! how it laugheth in its dream! 

— ^Hearest thou not how it mysteriously, frightfully, and 
cordially speaketh unto thee, the old deep, deep midnight? 

O man, take heed! 


Woe to me! Whitiber hath time gone? Have I not sunk into 
deep wells? 'The world sleepeth — 

Ah! Ah! 'The dog howleth, the moon shineth. Rather will I 
die, rather will I die, than say unto you what my midnigjit- 
heart now thinketh. 

Already have I died. It is all over. Spider, why spinnest thou 
around me? Wilt thou have blood? Ah! Ah! 'The dew falleth, 
the hour cometh — 


— ^The hour in which I frost and freeze, which asketh and 
asketh and asketh: "Who hath siifficient courage for it? 

— ^Who is to be master of the world? Who is going to say: 
Thus shall ye flow, ye great and small streams!” 

— ^The hour approacheth: O man, thou higher man, take 
heed! this talk is for fine ears, for thine ears — what sdth deep 
midnighfs voice indeed? 


It carrieth me away, my soul danceth. Day’s-wotk! Day’s- 
work! Who is to be master of the world? 

The moon is cool, the wind is still. Ah! Ah! Have ye already 
flown high enough? Y e have danced : a leg, nevertheless, is not 

Ye good dancers, now is all delight over: wine hath become 
lees, every cup hath become brittle, the sepulchres mutter. 

Ye have not flown high enough: now do the sepulchres mut- 
ter: "Free the dead! "^^y is it so long night? Doth not the 
moon make us drunken?” 

Ye higher men, free the sepulchres, awaken the corpses! 
Ah, why doth the worm still burrow? There approachetli, 
there approacheth, the hour, — 

— ^There boometh the clock-bell, there thrilleth still the 
heart, there burroweth still the wood-worm, the heart-worm. 
Ah! Ah! The world is deep! 


Sweet lyre! Sweet lyre! I love thy tone, thy drunken, ranun- 
culine tone! — ^how long, how far hath come unto me thv tone, 
from the distance, from the ponds of love! 



Thou old dock-bell, thou sweet lyre! Every pain hath tom 
thy heart, father-pain, fathers’ -pain, forefathers’ -pain; thy 
speech hath become ripe, — 

— ^Ripe like the golden autumn and the afternoon, like mine 
anchorite heart — ^now sayest thou: The world itself hath be- 
come ripe, the grape turneth brown, 

— ^Now doth it wish to die, to die of happiness. Ye higher 
men, do ye not feel it? There welleth up mysteriously an odour, 

— A perfume and odour of eternity, a rosy-blessed, brown, 
gold-wine-odour of old happiness. 

— Of drunken midnight-death happiness, which singeth: 
the world is deep, and deeper than the day could read! 


Leave me alone! Leave me alone! I am too pure for thee. 
Touch me not! Hath not my world just now become perfect? 

My skin is too pure for thy hands. Leave me alone, thou dull, 
doltish, stupid day! Is not the midnight brighter? 

The purest are to be masters of the world, the least known, 
the strongest, the midnight-souls, who are brighter and deeper 
than any day. 

O day, thou gropest for me? Thou feelest for my happiness? 
For thee am I rich, lonesome, a treasure-pit, a gold chamber? 

O world, thou wantest me? Am I worldly for thee? Am I 
spiritual for thee? Am I divine for thee? But day and world, 
ye are too coarse, — 

— ^Have cleverer hands, grasp after deeper happiness, after 
deeper unhappiness, grasp after some God; grasp not after me: 

— ^Mine unhappiness, my happiness is deep, thou strangp 
day, but yet am I no God, no God’s-hell: deep is its woe. 




God’s woe is deeper, thou strange world! Grasp at God’s 
woe, not at me! What am I! A drunken sweet lyre, — 

— A midnight-lyre, a bell-frog, which no one imderstand- 
eth, but which mtdst speak before deaf ones, ye higher men! 
For ye do not understand me! 

Gone! Gonel O youth! O noontide! O afternoon! Now have 
come evening and night and midnight, — the dog howleth, the 

— ^Is the wind not a dog? It whineth, it barketh, it howleth. 
Ah! Ah! how she sigheth! how she laugheth, how she whee2eth 
and panteth, the midnight! 

How she just now speaketh soberly, this drunken poetess! 
hath she perhaps overdrunk her drunkenness? hath she be- 
come overawake? doth she ruminate? 

— ^Her woe doth she ruminate over, in a dream, the old, deep 
midnight — and still more her joy. For joy, although woe be 
deep, jay h deeper still than grief can he. 

Thou grape-vine! Why dost thou praise me? Have I not cut 
thee! I am cmel, thou bleedest — : what meaneth thy praise of 
my drunken cruelty? 

"Whatever hath become perfect, everything mature — 
wanteth to die!” so sayest thou. Blessed, blessed be the vint- 
ner’s knife! But everything immature wanteth to live: alas! 

Woe saith: "Hence! Go! Away, thou woe!” But everything 
that suffereth wanteth to live, that it may become mature and 
lively and longing. 


— ^Longing for the further, the higher, the brighter. "I want 
heirs,” so saith ever3^ing that suffereth, "I want children, I do 
not want myself ," — 

Joy, however, doth not want heirs, it doth not want children, 
— ^joy wanteth itself, it wanteth eternity, it wanteth recurrence, 
it wanteth everything eternally-like-itself . 

Woe saith: "BreaJc, bleed, thou heart! Wander, thou leg! 
Thou wing, fly! Onward! upward! thou pain!” Well! Gheerup! 
O mine old heart: Woe saith: "Hence! Go!" 


Ye higher men, what think ye? Am I a soothsayer? Or a 
dreamer? Or a drunkard? Or a dream-reader? Or a midnight- 

Or a drop of dew? Or a fxune and fragrance of eternity? 
Hear ye it not? Smell ye it not? Just now hath my world become 
perfect, midnight is also mid-day, — 

Pain is also a joy, curse is also a blessing, night is also a 
sun, — ^go away! or ye will learn that a sage is also a fool. 

Said ye ever Yea to one joy? O my friends, then said ye Yea 
also unto dl woe. All things are enlinked, enlaced and enam- 
oured, — 

— Wanted ye ever once to come twice; said ye ever: “Thou 
pleasest me, happiness! Instant! Moment!” then wanted ye dl 
to come back again! 

— ^AU anew, all eternal, all enlinked, enlaced and enam- 
oured, Oh, then did ye love the world, — 

— Y e eternal ones, ye love it eternally and for all time: and 
also imto woe do ye say: Hence! Go! but come back! ¥or joys 
dl want — eternity! 




All joy wanteth the eternity of all things, it wanteth honey, 
it wanteth lees, it wanteth drunken midnight, it wanteth 
graves, it wanteth grave-tears’ consolation, it wanteth gilded 
evening-red — 

— What doth not joy want! it is thirstier, heartier, hungrier, 
more frightful, more mysterious, than all woe: it wanteth 
itself, it biteth into itself, the ring’s will writheth in it, — 

— ^It wanteth love, it wanteth hate, it is over-rich, it bestow- 
eth, it throweth away, it beggeth for some one to take from it, 
it thanketh the taker, it would fain be hated, — 

— So rich is joy that it thirsteth for woe, for hell, for hate, 
for shame, for tiie lame, for the world , — for this world. Oh, 
ye know it indeed! 

Ye higher men, for you doth it long, this joy, this irrepressi- 
ble, blessed joy — for your woe, ye failures! For failures, 
longeth all eternal joy. 

For joys all want themselves, therefore do they also want 
grief! O happiness, O pain! Oh break, thou heart! Ye higher 
men, do learn it, that joys want eternity. 

— ^Joys want the eternity of dl things, they want deep, pro- 
found eternity! 


Have ye now learned my song? Have ye divined what it 
would say? Well! Cheer up! Ye higher men, sing now my 

Sing now yourselves the song, the name of which is "Once 
more,’’ the signification of which is "Unto all eternity!” — 
sing, ye higher men, Zarathustra’s roundelay! 



O man! Take heed! 

What saith deep mtdnighfs voice indeed? 

^7 slept my sleep — 

"From deepest dream Vve tvoke, and plead : — 
"The world is deep, 

"And deeper than the day could read, 

"Deep is tts woe — , 

"Joy — deeper still than grief can be: 

"Woe saith: Hence! Go! 

"But joys all want eternity — , 

— Want deep, profound eternity!" 

80. The Sign 

In the morning, however, after this night, Zarathustra 
jumped up from his couch, and, having girded his loms, he 
came out of his cave glowing and strong, like a morning sun 
coming out of gloomy mountains. 

'Thou great star,’* spake he, as he had spoken onoe before, 
"thou deep eye of happiness, what would be all thy happiness 
if thou hadst not those for whom thou shinest! 

And if they remained in their chambers whilst thou art 
already awake, and comest and bestowest and distributest, how 
would thy proud modesty upbraid for it! 

Well! they still sleep, these higher men, whilst I am awake: 
they are not my proper companions! Not for them do I wait 
here in my mountains. 

At my work I want to be, at my day: but they understand 


not what are the signs of my morning, my step — is not for 
them the awakening-call. 

They still sleep in my cave; their dream still drinketh at my 
drunken songs. The audient ear for me — the obedient ear, is 
yet lacking in their limbs.’’ 

— ^This had Zarathustra spoken to his heart when the sun 
arose: then looked he inquiringly aloft, for he heard above 
him the sharp call of his eagle. "Well!” called he upwards, 
"thus is it pleasing and proper to me. Mine animals are awake, 
for I am awake. 

Mine eagle is awake, and like me honoureth the sun. With 
eagle-talons doth it grasp at the new light. Ye are my proper 
animals; I love you. 

But still do I lack my proper men!” — 

Thus spake Zarathustra; then, however, it happened that all 
on a sudden he became aware that he was flocked around and 
fluttered around, as if by innumerable birds, — the whizzing of 
so many wings, however, and the crowding around his head 
was so great that he shut his eyes. And verily, there came down 
upon him as it were a cloud, like a cloud of arrows which 
poureth upon a new enemy. But behold, here it was a cloud of 
love, and showered upon a new friend. 

"What happeneth unto me.^” thought Zarathustra in his 
astonished heart, and slowly seated himself on the big stone 
which lay close to the exit from his cave. But while he grasped 
about with his hands, around him, above him and below him, 
and repelled the tender birds, behold, there then happened to 
him something still stranger: for he grasped thereby unawares 
into a mass of thick, warm, shaggy hair; at the same time, how- 
ever, there sounded before him a roar, — a long, soft lion-roar. 

^^The sign cometh” said Zarathustra, and a change came 



over his heart. And in truth, when it turned dear before him 
there lay a yellow, powerful animal at his feet, resting its head 
on his knee, — ^unwilling to leave him out of love, and doing 
like a dog which again findefh its old master. The doves, how- 
ever, were no less eager with their love than the lion; and 
whenever a dove whisked over its nose, the lion shook its head 
and wondered and laughed. 

When all this went on Zarathustra spake only a word: "Mj 
children are nigh, my children” — , then he became quite mute. 
His heart, however, was loosed, and from his eyes there 
dropped down tears and fell upon his hands. And he took no 
furdier notice of anything, but sat there motionless, without 
repelling the animals further. Then flew the doves to and fro, 
and perched on his shoulder, and caressed his white hair, and 
did not tire of their tenderness and j oyousness. The strong lion, 
however, licked always the tears that fell on Zarathustra’s 
hands, and roared and growled shyly. Thus did these animals 

All this went on for a long time, or a short time : for properly 
speaking, there is no time on earth for such things — . Mean- 
while, however, the higher men had awakened in Zarathustra’s 
cave, and marshalled themselves for a procession to go to meet 
Zarathustra, and give him their morning greeting: for they had 
found when they awakened that he no longer tarried with 
them. When, however, they reached the door of the cave and 
the noise of their steps had preceded them, the hon started 
violently; it turned away all at once from Zarathustra, and 
roaring wildly, sprang towards the cave. The higher men, 
however, when they heard the lion roaring, cried all aloud as 
with one voice, fled back and vanished in an instant. 

Zarathustra himself, however, stunned and strange, rose 
from his seat, looked around him, stood there astonished, in- 


quired of his heart, bethought himself, and remained alone. 
’'What did I hear?” said he at last, slowly, **what happened 
unto me just now?” 

But soon there came to him his recollection, and he took in 
at a glance all that had taken place between yesterday and to- 
day. ''Here is indeed the stone,” said he, and stroked his beard, 
"on it sat I yester-morn; and here came the soothsayer unto me, 
and here heard I first the cry which I heard just now, the great 
cry of distress. 

O ye higher men, your distress was it that the old soothsayer 
foretold to me yester-morn, — 

— ^Unto your distress did he want to seduce and tempt me: 
*0 Zarathustra,’ said he to me, *I come to seduce thee to thy 
last sin.’ 

To my last sin?” cried Zarathustra, and laughed angrily at 
his own words: ''wha hath been reserved for me as my last 

— And once more Zarathustra became absorbed in himself, 
and sat down again on the big stone and meditated. Suddenly 
he sprang up, — 

^*Fellow‘Sufering! Felloti^suffering with the higher men!” 
he cried out, and his countenance changed into brass. "Well! 
That — ^hath had its time! 

My suffering and my fellow-suffering — ^what matter about 
them! Do I then strive after happiness? I strive after my work! 

Well! The lion hath come, my children are nigh, Zarathustra 
hath grown ripe, mine hour hath come: — 

This is my morning, my day beginneth: arise now, arise, 
thou great noontide^ 

Thus spake Zarathustra and left his cave, glowing and 
strong, like a morning sun coming out of gloomy mountains. 


Accn, No 

1. Books may be retained for a period not 
exceeding fifteen days.